864 Maroondah Highway, Coldstream
A visit to Oakridge is an experience like no other. Follow the winding driveway deep into the heart of the Yarra Valley winery, and you’ll find yourself outside a striking, ultra-modern building, surrounded by oak trees, rows of vines and distant mountain ranges. Every element of Oakridge intentionally links back to the earth, from the contemporary design and carefully crafted wines to the sustainable and seasonal menu.
The architectural statement of the Oakridge winery epitomises this approach. The red cantilevered element is not just a striking entrance, but it provides an open-dining space flooded with natural light. The long, narrow form of the building is not just aesthetic: it means that every guest has a seat near the floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the stunning vineyards.
Honouring Oakridge’s environment is crucial to the creation of its wines. Chief Winemaker, David Bicknell, has spent years cultivating a deep understanding of the subtleties of the Yarra Valley’s terroirs, and it is evident in
every sip. His winemaking harnesses all the intricacies of viticulture, from the soil and its micro-organisms, to sustainable farming practices – he even considers the type of music played during vinification.
Oakridge’s grapes are sourced from the on- site vines as well as carefully selected vineyards throughout the Yarra Valley. These grapes are treated with traditional techniques and minimal intervention, creating award-winning wines that express both their varietal characteristics and those of their specific terroir.
The restaurant is an unmissable part of the Oakridge experience – the seasonal flavours of the region are expertly matched to the wines. Chef, Matt Stone, accompanied by his partner and Sous Chef, Jo Barrett, brings innovative ideas and sustainable ethos to the menu, which is shaped entirely around the region and the produce that gives them access to. Thanks to Matt and Jo, Oakridge boasts an extensive kitchen garden and a menu filled with only local produce, which means that there are no sea-dwelling creatures on offer, fish comes in the form of trout, eel and
Murray Cod sourced from the Yarra Valley. This sustainable style of cooking and eating has allowed Oakridge to lead the charge in a new innovative style of dining that cares for every aspect of the meal from farm to plate.
Foraged ingredients, vegetables and herbs from the estate’s own gardens and native delicacies such as riberry, Davidson plum and mountain pepper, star in his dishes, creating cuisine that is true to the region. Depending on what’s freshest and in season, you’ll find dishes such as Smoked Trout with caviar, Cultured Cream and Caraway Croissant, or Sticky Kangaroo Shoulder with nahm jhim and nashi pear. The breathtaking view over the vineyards and valley links the bounty on your plate back to the land.
Oakridge is all about creating an elegant and refined experience that draws together the wine, the dining and the land, embracing every element of the Yarra Valley. The essence of Oakridge is the team’s passion for service and the exceptional wine and food, all set against the spectacular scenery.
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Photography by Katie Wilton