There’s still time to taste the best of Gippsland

Rick Lacey accepts the award for most successful exhibitor from the Mayor of Bass Coast Shire, Cr Michael Whelan.

Regional tourism body PEAK Destination Gippsland accentuated the positive in its January tourism update, highlighting many of the region’s award-winning wineries and restaurants.

With Australia Day Long Weekend approaching and with plenty of good weather ahead for a local driving holiday, you could do worse than seek out some of these taste destinations.

“We are all frustrated and alarmed by the rapid emergence of Omicron in December which disrupted what was going to be a bumper summer in Gippsland,” a DG spokesperson said.

“Initially, the number of visitors was high, but with the increase in confirmed cases and the isolation of close contacts, we have seen the impacts on visits, staff levels and supply chains throughout the region. .

“We can only focus on what we can control and respond with marketing campaigns to encourage visits,” they said, highlighting the best of Gippsland.

And at the top of the Destination Gippsland promotion is Rhyll’s vineyard and winery, Purple Hen Wines.

Purple Hen winemaker Rick Lacey made history at the 2021 Westpac Gippsland Wine Show in December by winning five of the top six trophies and awards.

Judging took place November 29, 2021 at the beautiful new Cape Paterson Surf Lifesaving Club with a tasting and exhibitor awards celebration the following week, December 8 at Phillip Island Winery’s stunning new reception venue, the Atrium .

Purple Hen Wines has won the following awards:

* Best Show Wine (Westpac Sponsor) – Purple Hen 2020 Shiraz

* Best red wine of the show (sponsor Mercurey Australia) – Purple Hen 2020 Shiraz

*Best White Wine of the Show (sponsor Cardinia Shire) – Purple Hen 2020 Off Dry Riesling

* Best Provenance Wines (sponsored by Farmer’s Daughters) – Pinot Noir, 2014, 2016, 2019

* Most successful exhibitor (Bass Coast Shire sponsor) – Purple Hen Winery

* Rob and Tom Lightfoot of Lightfoot & Sons of East Gippsland won the Judges Chairman’s Trophy (sponsor East Gippsland Shire) with their Lightfoot Myrtle Point Vineyard 2021 Chardonnay.

* Alistair Hicks of Blue Gables Vineyard in Central Gippsland won the Stewards’ Trophy (sponsor Gippsland Lifestyle Magazine) with Blue Gables 2019 Jesse Chardonnay.

Also recently, Destination Gippsland helped host Belinda Luksic of Delicious magazine on her trip to Gippsland, visiting as many fine restaurants and local produce outlets as possible in South Gippsland and East Gippsland, including :

* Hogget Kitchen, Warragul

* Loch Brewery and Distillery

* The Loch Grocer

* Ball Country Cheese, Moyarra

* Gurneys Cider, Foster-Fish Creek

* The Great Southern Rail Trail

* Gibson’s Pantry, Fish Creek

* Meeniyan Square, Trulli, Moo’s in Meeniyan, Pandesal Bakery, Meeniyan Pantry & Cellar, Mika and Max and Ross Farm in Meeniyan

* The Long Paddock, Lindenow

Lightfoot & Sons, Calulu

* Sardine Cantina, Paynesville

* Sardine Dinner, Paynesville

* Pier 70, Paynesville

* Raymond Island, Paynesville

* Captain’s Cove, Paynesville

* Sodafish, lakes entree

The Phillip Island Winery was the perfect venue for the Westpac Gippsland Wine Show in December 2021.

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