Perhaps famous mostly for its wineries, the Yarra Valley is also a gourmand’s paradise full of artisan producers, small farms and cafes. One of the best ways to experience the food in the Yarra Valley is to live like a local for the day and shop at one of their farmers markets.
On a brisk Sunday morning I ventured to the Yarra Valley Farmers Market at Yering Station ( only a one hour drive east from Melbourne). This market is the longest running farmers’ market in Victoria, which has grown since its inception in 1999. The stall holders pride themselves on their paddock to plate philosophy, which gives visitors the chance to buy direct from the grower, producer or maker.
By 9am, the atmosphere is abuzz with dozens of producers and caffeine hungry visitors. Within seconds of entering the gorgeous grounds, your nostrils are welcomed by a pleasant smell of freshly brewed coffee and the delicious waft of melting butter from Le Creperie. The crowd is a bit bleary eyed at this time of the morning, searching eagerly for the nearest coffee stand to get their early morning fix. And what better place to start than Yarra Valley Coffee.
Most of the stalls are located undercover in the historic barn at Yering Station. It’s an all-weather market held all year round from 9am to 2pm on the third Sunday of each month.
There are dozens of stalls selling a variety of goods including fresh seasonal fruit and vegetables, free range eggs, home-made pastas, breads and pastries and much more. It’s a visual and sensory feast and visitors are encouraged to try before they buy at many of the stalls.
A must visit is Le Creperie for their sweet and savoury crepes. With crepes as good as this, you could be anywhere in the streets of France.
And just look at these happy customers!
Lady Paella is another crowd favourite and makes me feel all nostalgic about backpacking through Spain many moons ago.
Or if gozlemes are more your thing, check out Nuri’s Kitchen or the most mouth watering pies from the the Yarra Valley Pie Lady.
The best thing about the markets is meeting the local producers. The Yarra Valley Regional Food Group was established by an enthusiastic group of people who were keen to promote Yarra Valley food producers and the Yarra Valley as a foodie destination. Beginning in 1999, the food group has grown from the original 41 founding members to over 100 local food and wine producers, many of whom come together on the third Sunday of each month at Yering Station to sell their products at the market
It’s a great place to stock up on fresh fruit and vegetables and also products you wouldn’t normally see at the supermarket like pita bits from Ricci’s Bikkies , treats from the House of Gingerbread, and Cunliffe and Waters jams.
And don’t leave home without buying some beautiful flowers.
The Yarra Valley Farmers Market is held at Yering Station on the third Sunday of every month.
Next Farmers Market Dates 2017
Sunday 18th June
Sunday 16th July
Sunday 20th August
For more information about the Yarra Valley visit www.visityarravalley.com.au