geelong winery

The Best Wineries Geelong Has to Offer

Whether you’re a casual wine drinker, a seasoned aficionado, the Geelong wine region in Victoria is a must-visit destination to visit with friends and family. It offers the perfect combination of fine wines, breathtaking scenery and fantastic food. 

The region is renowned for its diverse microclimates and maritime influence, which contribute to the production of high-quality Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Shiraz. With a viticultural history that dates back to the 19th century, Geelong experienced a revival in the 1960s and now boasts a range of boutique wineries and vineyards that are celebrated for wines with incredible depth of flavour, elegance, and complexity, benefiting from cool, wet winters and warm, dry summers. 

winery geelong

Read Next: The Best Things to Do in Geelong, Victoria

Wineries and Vineyards in the Geelong Wine Region

There are more than 30 wineries and vineyards in the Geelong region, making it difficult to figure out where to start. That’s why it’s best to rent a car and go on a road trip. It gives you the ability to visit some of the region’s finest vineyards and wineries, and stay as long as you like. We always suggest finding a rental with Discover Cars to family or friends, since it gives you the ability to pick from great selection of reliable rentals, unlimited mileage and free cancellation. Easy peasy.

The Winery Route

Jack Rabbit Vineyard

Jack Rabbit Vineyard is known for its exquisite wines and breathtaking views across the bay to Geelong, the You Yangs, and Melbourne. Established in 2010 by David and Lyndsay Sharp, Jack Rabbit Vineyard has received numerous awards. Their selection of premium wines includes Cabernet Shiraz, Merlot, Pinot Noir, Shiraz, and a variety of white wines such as Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, Riesling, and Sauvignon Blanc. Winemaker Nyall Condon believes in minimal intervention to highlight the natural characteristics of each varietal. You can get a taste at a guided wine tasting, and pick up a bottle or two of your favourites from their cellar door sales.

Jack Rabbit Winery - Bellarine Peninsula, Victoria, Australia
Jack Rabbit Vineyard.

But it’s not just wine at the table at Jack Rabbit. The vineyard features a contemporary a la carte restaurant led by Chefs David Warmisham and Paul Andrews, who prioritize local produce to create stunning seasonal menus. We felt like something a little more casual, and the ‘House of Jack Rabbit’ Cellar Door and Tasting Room’s café-style menu was amazing. 

Where to find them: 85 McAdams Lane in Bellarine, VIC 3221
When to visit: Restaurants open daily from 10am to 5pm (Jack Rabbit Restaurant open for dinner from 6 pm on Friday and Saturday); Tastings weekdays from 11am to 4pm, weekends from 10am to 11:30am or after 2:30pm 

Provenance Wines

Set in a beautifully refurbished 1870s bluestone building, Provenance Wines, the word ‘provenance’ meaning ‘place of origin’ is celebrated for showcasing the best of Geelong wines including specialties such as Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Shiraz, utilizing grapes from prime vineyards in the region. Owners and winemakers Scott Ireland and Sam Vogel’s efforts have not gone unnoticed, with accolades like a 5 Red Star Winery rating by James Halliday and accolades including a gold medal for their Shiraz at the 2017 Royal Melbourne Show and being named the 2019 ‘Best Value Winery’ by James Halliday Wine Companion. 

Provenance Winery. Photo courtesy of Provenance.
Provenance Winery. Photo courtesy of Provenance.

This kind of pedigree makes for some truly incredible tastings that make even the most casual wine drinker feel like a connoisseur. And that’s exactly what we felt like after our 30-minute guided tasting that included a selection of eight of their top wines. After the tasting, we headed to the restaurant where Head Chef Nathan McIver took us on a culinary journey with modern Australian cuisine prepared with top-quality local, seasonal ingredients. A visit to Provenance is a truly exceptional experience.

Where to find them: 100 Lower Paper Mills Rd, Fyansford, VIC, 3218
When to visit: Open Friday, 11am to 4pm, Saturday and Sunday, 11am to 5pm; Closed on public holidays

Scotchmans Hill

Perched at the highest point on the Peninsula, offering breathtaking views across Port Phillip Bay, Swan Bay, the Heads, and the Mornington Peninsula, Scotchmans Hill is one of the most beloved wineries in the Geelong region. Since 1982 it has been producing sophisticated cool climate wines from Pinot Noir, Chardonnay to Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Traminer and their first wine variety, Riesling. Winemaker Robin Brockett makes sure that the winery maintains its status as one of the top wineries not only in the region but also in the country. 

geelong winery
Scotchman Hill Winery. Photo courtesy of Scotchman Hill.

We’ve been wanting to visit Scotchmans Hill for a long time and the experience was all we had hoped for and more. We booked a 45-minute wine tasting that included a selection of 5 wines from their current vintage, which were incredible, but there’s also a premium, 6 wine tasting that features some of their premium and back vintage wines. That’s definitely on our list for next time. Of course, we had to try the food too, so we headed to the restaurant with its sweeping views across Port Phillip and Swan Bay. The lunch menu is compact but amazing. Believe me, their Charred Pork Cutlet “au Normande” is one of the best I’ve had. Then there are the cheese boards…

Where to find them: 190 Scotchmans Rd, Drysdale VIC 3222
When to visit: Open Monday to Sunday, 11am to 4pm, public holiday hours might differ

Oakdene Vineyards

If you want the full Bellarine experience, head to Oakdene Vineyards. Nestled on the Bellarine Peninsula, Oakdene Vineyards offers everything from a cellar door, restaurant, café, accommodation, and beautiful gardens. This family-run winery prides itself on producing low yields of high-quality fruit, benefiting from the region’s cool maritime climate, which they turn into award-winning, handcrafted wines. Oakdene has added a bit of playfulness to the experience, with its unique “Upside Down House” cellar door, which is a nice departure from the often oh-so-serious vibes of some other wineries. Once inside the, well, roof of the cellar door, you can create your own selection of 5 of their premium wines for a tasting. Some of our favourites included the 2023 Pinot Grigio, the 2021 Shiraz and their 2022 Field Blend, a light and fruity Shiraz and Merlot blend.

vineyard in geelong

Food-wise, their playfulness continues at the Mr Grubb @ Oakdene bistro. Nestled among the birch trees, the eatery has a laid-back, family-friendly atmosphere and offers an exciting menu of everything from steak to burgers to pizzas and even salads if you feel like something light. They pair this “pub-grub” with a wine list that features Oakdene wines and local beers and ciders. With taste buds tickled and bellies satisfied, we left Oakdene Vineyards vowing to come back for a stay at their guesthouse. If you’re looking for a fun, family-friendly experience, put Oakdene Vineyards at the top of your list.

Where to find them: 255 Grubb Rd, Wallington VIC 3222
When to visit: Open Monday to Sunday, 11am to 4pm, public holiday hours might differ.

Banks Road Vineyard

A short drive from Geelong lies the popular Banks Road Vineyard. Despite being relatively young, as wineries go, this family-run small-production winery has already produced some incredible, award-winning wines, being awarded a well-deserved 5 Star Status in the 2020 James Halliday Wine Companion. Owners William and Avanelle Derham’s philosophy of minimal intervention emphasizes a close connection to the winemaking process and the fruit they produce. The vineyard produces a wide variety of well-structured wines with elegant profiles, including Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, Pinot Gris, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc; and a Sparkling Blanc de Blanc. All the wines are made on-site travelling only 400 metres from grape to bottle to tasting counter! 

geelong winery
Banks Road Winery. Photo courtesy of Banks Road.

You can taste some of their amazing estate wines at their cellar door or while grabbing a bite at their café that serves a small menu of delicious locally inspired shared plates and seasonal dishes in a relaxed and tranquil setting. We only popped in to stock up on some of our favourite wines, but the aromas coming from the café made us consider a second lunch. Banks Road also offers a function and wedding space with flexible food and beverage packages available for almost any type of function.

Where to find them: 600 Banks Rd, Marcus Hill VIC 3222
When to visit: Winery and cellar door (and restaurant for lunch) open Wednesday to Sunday, 11:30am to 5pm; Restaurant open for dinner on Saturdays, 5:30pm to 8:30pm

Bellarine Estate Winery

Established in 1996 by the Kenny family, Bellarine Estate Winery is a family-owned and operated vineyard and winery situated on 11 acres of sloping hills overlooking the picturesque Corio Bay. The estate has made a name for itself with its complex and elegant wines made from a variety of grapes, including Shiraz, Pinot Noir, Merlot, Chardonnay, Viognier, and Sauvignon Blanc. 

Bellarine Estate
Bellarine Estate Winery. Photo courtesy of Bellarine Estate.

We love learning about what goes into the wine, but we’re more interested in what the wine tastes like and of course the food. Priorities one and two. They have a choice of a ‘regular’ tasting of a great selection of their estate wines or a guided wine-tasting experience paired with their house-made charcuterie. We chose the guided tasting, which was really special – incredible wine with delicious bites and a knowledgeable team to guide you through the complexities of the wine, which makes the experience so much more worth it. 

The restaurant is a fairly new addition to the estate. Launched in 2022, the Texas BBQ @ Bellarine Estate is located adjacent to Bellarine Estate’s cellar door and serves up delicious sharing plates straight from the smoker to classic American-smoked delicacies. Despite the meaty vibe, there’s also a vegetarian BBQ platter available. We went for the classic “Texas BBQ Board for 2”, finishing off with a classic American Sundae. Amazing.

Where to find them: 2270 Portarlington Rd, Bellarine VIC 3223
When to visit: Open Thursday to Saturday, 11am to 4pm

Nicol’s Paddock

With a background in horticulture, Peter Nicol planted the first vines of what is to become Nicol’s Paddock back in 1997, producing its first vintage of Saint Regis Shiraz in 2001. In March 2018 the winery rebranded from Saint Regis Winery to Nicol’s Paddock in March 2018 to better represent the family and their love of producing exceptional quality wines with the new generation owners Jack Nicol and Katherine Anderson, taking over and continuing to build on the winery’s legacy, focusing on producing estate-grown Shiraz, and sourcing local Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Peter is still in charge of making award-winning wines, which include medals from the Cool Climate Wine Show and the Geelong Wine Show. 

Nicol's Paddock Geelong
Nicol’s Paddock. Photo courtesy of Nicol’s Paddock.

To taste Peter’s exclusive wines, you have to make an appointment. This provides for a more intimate tasting experience, tasting their delicate wines while overlooking the small vineyard. We were very impressed to hear that the grapes are harvested by the Nicol family and their friends themselves every year. It’s the type of dedication you don’t often find these days. Speaking of family, the restaurant is a delightful shared dining experience filled with food made with locally sourced seasonal ingredients. Eating there feels like you’re actually dining with the Nicol family, and you often do… This unique and intimate food and wine experience was definitely one of our favourites and we’ll definitely be visiting the Nicol’s again on our next trip to the Geelong wine district.

Where to find them: 35 Waurn Ponds Dr, Waurn Ponds VIC 3216
When to visit: Cellar door by appointment only; Restaurant, Thursday, 11am to 4pm, Friday and Saturday, 11am to 10pm, Sunday, 11am to 5pm

Read Next: The Ultimate Guide to the Bellarine Peninsula

Wine Tours

If you don’t feel like driving yourself, why not join a wine tour? Drink all you like, and leave the driving and planning up to someone else. There are countless Geelong winery tours, but these are two of our favourites! You’ll hit the icons and a few off the beaten track destinations along the way.

From Melbourne: Bellarine Peninsula Food & Wine Taste Trail

The Bellarine Peninsula Food and Wine Taste Trail is the ultimate Bellarine Peninsula taste trail takes you to some of our favourite Geelong wineries like Scotchmans Hill and Jack Rabbit Vineyard where you’ll enjoy incredible food and wine, and sample some local craft beers and ciders along the way all in the company of a knowledgeable local guide.

wine tour geelong

Melbourne: Around the Bay Food & Wine Taste Trail

Visit two spectacular wine regions in one day on the Around the Bay Food & Wine Taste Trail. Travel along the breathtaking Bellarine Peninsula and visit two of Geelong’s top wineries, Scotchmans Hill and Jack Rabbit Vineyard to enjoy their world-class wines and experience their epic eateries. Make your way to the Peninsula Bathing Boxes and stop at the famous St. Andrews craft brewery along the way. It’s an unforgettable day of food, wine and beer.

Read Next: The Best Geelong Accommodation and Places to Stay

The Geelong wine region is one of Australia’s top wine regions and it’s easy to see why. With its spectacular natural beauty and a wide selection of world-class wines and foodie-favourite eateries, what’s not to love?!