Can you tell I’m a little excited about this one. Can ya?! Chandon is one of our all time favourite sparkling wines so there was something very cool about going to the place where the magic happens. In my mind Domaine Chandon is like my version Willy Wonka’s Chocolate factory. Except wine, because I don’t really eat chocolate. In fact the course I plotted for our wine tour, where we visited Kellybrook Winery, Yering Station, and Yering Farm first, were merely a lead up to the main event: Domaine Chandon!
As one would expect the whole estate is stunningly beautiful with immaculate lawns and gardens, and a charming combination of old and newer buildings. There is heaps to explore, and we did get a little lost trying to find out way to the cellar door. Though we did find the visitor centre that was full of interesting information about the history of the winery and the wine-making process.
The cellar door was quite crowded and busy. It felt much more like going to a bar than a winery. The service was perfectly polite, but a little rushed. Though we did have a very enjoyable time standing at the bar for our $10 wine tasting if I went back I would opt for the more expensive $25 tasting we would have had 4 half glasses of wine each that we could have then taken to enjoy in the outdoor seating area or even in the restaurant where we could have had a little something to eat with the wine.
Given this was the fourth winery on our tour I think we should have ordered some food at Domaine Chandon. It was starting to go a little to our heads (though that is half the fun). Main meals in the Chandon restaurant start at a surprisingly reasonable $25 a plate, though I think we would have gone for the $38 cheese platter for more of a causal tasting experience. We could have sat outside, relaxed, and enjoyed the absolutely incredible views of the vineyard.
For Groups and Weddings
Groups between 10 and 24 people will require a booking. Also they don’t split bills for groups and will require credit card details at the time of the booking, though it won’t be charged until the day you arrive. As I mentioned there are two tasting options. $10 each for a “splash” of 6 of their wines. Or $25 for 4 half glasses of wine.
It goes without saying that Domaine Chandon would be an absolutely incredible venue for a wedding. I can just imagine how stunning wedding photographs would be around the estate. Though I can’t actually find any references to weddings on their website. So if that’s what you’re looking for you’ll need to contact them directly to find out more information.
Because the cellar door was very busy and with bar-like atmosphere I wouldn’t particularly recommend bringing children inside. Though it was a Saturday so maybe they’re quieter mid-week. With all the expansive outdoor areas I can imagine children would have fun running around the playing without being underfoot. I’d just want to keep a close eye on them given how easily we become lost in the vastness of the estate, it would be easy for children to disappear too. Also aside from the cellar door the rest of the estate is very pram-friendly, with lots of wide flat footpaths and no steps.
As I mentioned Chandon is our go-to sparkling wine at home (though we normally stick with the Non-vintage Brut, especially when it’s on special at Dan Murphey’s) so we knew we were in for a excellent wine tasting experience. And we did thoroughly enjoy all the wines.
Altius 2012- High altitude wine. Citrusy and complex. Despite the price tag this wasn’t our favourite wine at Chandon. $59
Vintage Brut 2013 – This was our favourite classic “champagne” style. Easy to drink, well balanced crisp and creaminess. $35
Cuvee Riche NV. This wine has a whopping 50g of sugar per litre, so it was very sweet. Though it was still enjoyable for those of us who prefer our wine very dry. $35
Sparkling Pinot Noir Rosé 2016 Soft, sweet, fruit, with berry flavours. This was a very pleasant wine. I sincerely regret not buying a bottle while we were there. $25
Sparkling Pinot Shiraz – We were a little skeptical of the sparkling red, though it wasn’t unpleasant. It was quite sweet given it had 30 grams of sugar per litre. It would be paired nicely with dark chocolate. $35
Cool Climate Shiraz 2015. Light, dry. Good dinner party wine because it was quite light and mild for shiraz. $46