Italy is at the top of my bucket list and is yet to be discovered by my pasta obsessed taste buds and view driven eyes. I long to experience the Italian way of life and journey along the Amalfi coast stopping in each town to appreciate their traditions and taste their wares. So to be given the assignment by visityarravalley.com.au to experience Soumah and all they have to offer was a step in the right direction. You see, due to the climate of the Yarra Valley and the soil type and structure, it is the perfect place to plant, harvest and convert Northern Italian grape varieties into Australian made wine.
Brett took over the property in Gruyere eleven years ago and quickly set out replanting some of the 50 acres of vines to take full advantage of the cool climate of the Yarra Valley. He had a vision to turn the grape wholesaler into a winery with a Cellar Door and restaurant. Converting the work shed on the property into a relaxed, homely and rustic venue. With so many Italian grape varieties represented in the vineyards, it was only natural that the food on offer would follow the same vain, making wine pairing an easy task.
The beauty of a Soumah experience is that it is more than just a tasting followed by lunch. It is a wine education. You walk away from the tasting realising that the human race has been in the business of wine since the first millennia and that it will continue to celebrate and enjoy the beverage till the end of time. The mother of all grape varieties, the head of the family tree Savarro calls Soumah home. Brett is more than delighted to share the story of this wine and its history and you will more than likely walk away with a bottle of Savarro just to indulge in the story and become part of the long line of people to partake in the drinking of it.
Depending on what season you visit Soumah will determine what you will do after the tasting. In the cooler weather you can take a seat in the small dining area and enjoy an entree of winter bruschetta followed by a main of slow cooked lamb with sides of garlic roasted potatoes and garden salad. Or in the warmer months take your glass of wine and sit outside to take in the spectacular view of the property rolling out before you. Order a share platter or (if there after Oct 2016) wood fire pizza and enjoy the serenity.
Ensure you venture off the highway and explore the back roads of the Yarra Valley. You will discover the true beauty of the land and return with an unexpected education in viticulture and wine appreciation.
Read more on my Soumah experience at visityarravalley.com.au or click here.