Merricks Creek: Food, Pinot and Focus
Address: 44 Merricks Rd, Merricks, VIC 3916
Varieties: Chardonnay, Pinot Noir
Merricks Creek takes the casual dining experience and turns it into something spectacular. They offer a great range of sharing plates to tuck into, using only high quality and fresh ingredients that really make difference to your palate. Its a small but charming relaxed, open space overlooking the vineyard where all the fruit comes from. Winemaker Peter and son Sam are the team running the cellar door and restaurant, their passion for both Pinot Noir and serving their guests shines through.
Merricks Creek have a laser focus, producing an Estate Chardonnay and an Estate Pinot Noir. Additionally, in good vintages the produce their close-planted Pinot Noir, which is grown unique within the Peninsula. This growing technique is similar to that used in Burgundy, and involves training the vines much closer to the ground and each other, to produce a wine that has a more concentrated fruit flavour. They also hold onto back vintages, so it is possible to have a vertical tasting experience of several vintages – currently four from 2012 onward.
The kitchen at Merricks Creek offers a number of delicious sharing plates, ranging from top quality charcuterie and cheeses, to perfectly cooked sirloin and hot, cheesy ‘crispy thins’, to delicious sweet dishes to finish off your meal. If you’re having lunch you can also preface it by tasting through their wines at the table.
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Merricks Creek has recently renovated their new cellar door, in a comfortable mid-century modern style, open plan and adorned with fireplaces. The cellar door and restaurant open on to a large patio that offers stunning views overlooking the vines.
What we like
This estate has all the ingredients needed for a fantastic day out; spectacular views and relaxed setting, friendly and welcomin service, out-of-this-world food, and superb wine.
What we don’t like
If you’re just looking for a tasting and expecting the standard Mornington Peninsula lineup of 8-12 wines you might be a bit disappointed by the smaller range. However, if you’re interested in tasting the difference that a vintage can make on the Pinot Noir made in the same way from the same site, this is fascinating.