MasterChef Australia returns to Melbourne for it’s ninth season and a week in Victoria with Heston Blumenthal is hot on the menu.
Heston takes the contestants on a week-long road trip extravaganza through some of Victoria’s many extraordinary culinary experiences and settings. The team uncover some of Victoria’s biggest secrets and travel to Swan Hill and the produce rich Murray food bowl around Mildura, to Brim in the expansive Wimmera-Mallee wheat belt region of the Grampians, and the stunning Mornington Peninsula gourmet region.
“I’ve spent a lot of time in Melbourne, and am thrilled to now have the opportunity to travel through Victoria, a state bustling and teeming with incredibly diverse local produce. The seasonality of food here lends itself to an impressive array of restaurants and small artisan producers – the gems around every corner constantly amaze me.” says Heston.
For those wanting to experience the lesser known gems of Victoria explored in the show, a few more suggestions include:
Mornington Peninsula’s Polperro Wines offers an intimate cellar door experience, with a bistro and luxury accommodation for guests to enjoy after a lavish wine tasting. Other perhaps lesser-known wineries that are well worth the visit, include Yabby Lake, Trofeo Estate and Phaedrus Estate. Those looking for a fuller experience (and belly) can follow the WineFoodFarmGate trail.
The Grampians’ Brim Silo Art Trail – towering grain silo’s decorated in world-class street art – can be enjoyed on a leisurely road trip through around the town of Brim. Visitors in the region can also climb Mt Arapiles or see some incredible indigenous rockart during their stay in this natural wonderland, and then drop into the award-winning Royal Mail restaurant, overlooking Mt Sturgeon.
Swan Hill is home to the Pioneer Settlement providing visitors with a real look into the Murray’s past. Visitors can have an amazing produce and dining experience at Spoons Riverside and then make their way to one of the regions biggest secret-garden, Cactus Country.
Mildura is a much loved destination for foodie’s, with the likes of award-winning restaurant Stefano’s celebrating the local produce of the area. The region is also home to some great wine, beers and gin, with Sunraysia Cellar Door and Fossey’s Gin Elixir great places to start. Experiencing the region by houseboat is a must, although the Riverboats Music Festival makes for a perfect excuse
For a chance to win the ultimate culinary escape to Victoria and follow in the footsteps of this year’s MasterChef contestants, viewers of the show (7.30pm Sunday 18 June to Thursday 22 on TEN) can get the code word during broadcast to enter the competition.