Indulge your passion for delicious, locally made wine

2 July 2024

Rated among James Halliday’s Top 100 Australian Wineries, and located just 90 minutes drive from Melbourne, or 20 minutes from Geelong, Scotchmans Hill is the best place for all wine enthusiasts to experience some of the finest wines that our region has to offer. 

Nestled within the heart of the picturesque Bellarine Peninsula, you will find the award-winning Scotchmans Hill Winery, a must-visit destination for wine lovers and aficionados.

Spanning across 320 acres of land, there are over 255 acres of vineyards, large wine-making facilities, an intimate function space, restaurant and cellar door, as well as stunning gardens and pathways that lead you to seating areas and magnificent panoramic views.

From the moment you arrive at the gates of this stunning property, you are met with an ambiance of timeless beauty. As you walk the grounds you experience a combination of rustic country charm and classic elegance, along with friendly staff who welcome you warmly, making you feel instantly at home.

Recently we sat down with Chief Winemaker and Vineyard Manager Robin Brockett, who gave us some wonderful insights on its history, along with a fascinating insider’s look at the wine industry and a sneak peek at the inner workings of Scotchmans Hill.

The winery and vineyard were established in 1982 spanning just 5 acres of the land, and at the time was one of the first wineries to be built on the Bellarine Peninsula. In the early 1980’s very little was known about wines or the wine industry so it was a fairly unique concept to the region. The following year, 45 acres of vineyard were planted, which was quite significant growth, and Scotchmans Hill established itself as one of the largest wineries in Geelong.

The original cellar door situated by the front gate was opened in 1993, and then in 2016 a new cellar door was opened closer to the original homestead. By 1990 the industry was still quite small and there were only 5 vineyards in the region, until the mid-90’s to the early 2000’s, where popularity grew and the winery landscape changed exponentially.

Robin joined the team in the late 1980’s, after working in the wine industry in his hometown of New Zealand. Initially enrolled in an agricultural finance course, he was sent to work at an agricultural property after his first year of study, and it was during that time his passion and love for the wine industry developed. He deferred his finance studies and began studying viticulture so he could establish a career for himself in an area that he thoroughly enjoyed. When he originally joined the Scotchmans team, he intended on staying for 2-3 years to gain experience, however, 3 decades later, he remains an integral part of the day to day running of the vineyards and winery.

Over the years he has seen tremendous change in the industry and in particular the popularity of the wines that people choose to drink. He acknowledges that all varietals tend to have a 30-year cycle in which they peak in popularity for wine drinkers, and as habits, demographics, climates and even food tastes change, other varieties become more prevalent and begin to take over.

He notes that Chardonnay and Pinot Noir are currently two of the most popular and sought after varietals at Scotchmans Hill, closely followed by Pinot Gris and Shiraz. That being said, they produce a large variety of wines that cater to the palates of most wine enthusiasts.

Their team of winemakers is one of the largest within the region, largely due to the fact that they produce wines not only for their own brand, but have also established great partnerships with other local wineries.

Robin and his team are incredibly passionate about ensuring that each product that comes out of the winery is of the highest quality and go to great lengths to ensure that nothing but the best is produced. If they find that any batch is substandard or could be done better, they will continue to work on it, until it is of the consistently high quality that they are so well-known for producing.

The winemaking team operate under the philosophy “remain hands off and let the vineyards express themselves”, nurturing the crops to get the best quality, and also maintaining as natural a process as possible. Within this authentic process, there is very little artificial interference and because of this, all of their wines are vegan friendly and as close to their natural state as possible.

Consistency and excellence are synonymous with the Scotchmans Hill brand and that spans beyond just the winery and into all facets of the day to day running. From the cellar door, the vineyards and winery, the restaurant and function space, right through to the administration and sales teams, they believe in over delivering and remaining consistent, in order to provide outstanding quality. This is felt from the moment you walk through the doors. When you are immersed in the atmosphere, you can feel the great energy of the positive culture that has been cultivated, and that continues to flourish.

Excitingly, the team are currently hard at work in the vineyards, nurturing the crops of a wonderful new generation of varietals including Gamay, Fiano, Tempranillo and Albarino that they hope to see at the end of this year.

Whether you are wanting to sample the wines at the cellar door, book an intimate function, or enjoy a cosy meal in the restaurant, Scotchmans Hill promises to offer a memorable and first-class experience that will leave you wanting more.

The Cellar Door is open 7 days a week from 11am for wine tastings and sales.

The Restaurant is open for lunch Thursday – Sunday and for dinner on Saturdays.

For bookings and enquiries, call 03 5251 4431 or for more information on special events and to view their online shop, visit www.scotchmans.com.au

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