Food and Wine | Road Trip 06 August 2016

An Antiques And Foodie Road Trip Through The Mornington Peninsula

Victoria’s glorious south east is the best place to go antique hunting while enjoying cellar doors and gourmet pit stops along the way. Spend one blissful weekend wining, dining and finding your way around the Mornington Peninsula, just a stone’s throw from Melbourne. Here’s where to stop or seek out along the way.

Jackalope Hotel Mornington Peninsula VIC Mandatory credit Tourism Australia

Trawl through antiques at Tyabb

Follow the back roads that snake across the narrow stretch of the Morning Peninsula. Jutting out into seas of shimmering blue, the town of Tyabb (a sharp inhale towards the west of Mornington), is the epicentre of antiques and home to Australia’s largest antique and collectable store – The Tyabb Packing House.

This place is literally packed and you need good trawling skills to find treasures across the 5000 square metres of shop space. Pick through items dating back to the first European Settlers in 1803, crockery from the 1950s, Art Deco furniture, retro and vintage clothing, fine art, jewellery and memorabilia from across the ages. The Packing House is an antique in itself, paying homage to the shed’s history as an apple storage facility. Right next door the Tyabb Grainstore is also an antiques and vintage store worth a look.


Squeeze in a few cellar doors

Antiquing is indeed a pleasurable pastime, especially when you combine the hunt with time to meander through the stunning seaside villages fringing Port Phillip Bay. The Mornington Peninsula is home to more than 50 cellar doors pouring everything from award-winning pinot noir at Paringa Estate, to the gamay being nurtured at Eldridge Estate Red Hill.

Venture further for vintage

On the hunt for more vintage and antique finds? Duck and weave through coastal and country villages, criss-crossing the Peninsula to discover antique barns, vintage tailors and more. Tyabb is home to half a dozen antique stores alone, but there are even more scores waiting to be found across the Mornington Peninsula. Make a slow drive down to Rosebud Vintage Bazaar in Rosebud and Marlene Miller Antiques at the tip in Sorrento. 

Stop for a fancy, schmancy celebratory lunch

The Mornington Peninsula has no shortage of gorgeous cellar doors with paddock-to-plate dining displaying the best of the region on a plate. None have raised more fuss than Doot Doot Doot, the signature restaurant at Willow Creek Vineyard’s lavish boutique hotel Jackalope. Some 10,000 glowing lights hang from the ceiling, setting the tone for what is an extravagant meal. For something slightly less over-the-top, try Ten Minutes by Tractor, a fine dining spot that serves a six-course set menu with an air of casual, country warmth.

Still too fancy? How about Green Olive, a sustainable farm shop and casual cafe set on a 27-acre property. Here local produce shines through with zero-kilometre produce and homemade olive oil, chutneys and preserves, which you can purchase on-site. After lunch, tour the farm or join a hands-on workshop.

Green Olive Winery Red Hill VIC Mandatory credit Mornington Peninsula Regional Tourism

Go for a gourmet detour

Filling your boot with farm fresh produce is easy in the Mornington Peninsula. Stop at Red Hill Cellar & Pantry, a gourmet grocer that stocks more than 700 products from the local region including local cheese and provisions, fresh produce, dairy and smallgoods, and, of course, local wine, beer, cider and spirits. There are pick-your-own fields for strawberries, cherries and blueberries at Sunny Ridge Estate Strawberry Farm, hand painted Belgium chocolates to sample Mornington Peninsula Chocolates, and a host of farm gates with herbs, pumpkins, olives and tomatoes for sale with an honesty system.

Christmas Hills Raspberry Farm Mandatory credit Tourism Australia

Finish the antiques adventure in Flinders

End the day at Cook Street in Flinders, a sleepy little hamlet overlooking the moody waters of Western Port Bay. Here you can explore the charming town and its little boutiques and antiques dealers, or immerse yourself in nature. Watch the ocean break over the basalt rocks of Mushroom Reef Marine Sanctuary, hike the rugged coastline from Flinders to Cape Schanck, or take a walk down to The Blowhole, where rocky coast and huge basalt boulders await.
Cape Schanck Boardwalk Cape Schanck VIC Mandatory credit Mornington Peninsula Regional Tourism
Eager to explore the Mornington Peninsula? Oaks Hotels has seven hotels in Melbourne, the perfect base for this easy day trip.