Pyrenees Wine Region in Western Victoria

The Pyrenees Wine Region is located around the eponymous mountain range in Western Victoria. To the west is the Grampians Wine Region, and to the east is the Bendigo Wine Region.

St Ignatius is one of the innovative wineries in this region

The climate and soils have proved to be very suitable for the production of high quality red wines and hence there is a predominance of Shiraz as the variety of choice.

This region is located mainly to the north of Great Dividing Range. Dry autumns with cool nights make for ideal ripening conditions, but the local wine growers have to contend with drought and spring frosts in some locations.

The main town in the Pyrenees Region is Avoca, a gold era settlement that now has a population of 1500 or so. The larger town of St Arnaud lies at the northern boundary of the region.

The modern phase of winemaking in the region dates back to the 1960s when the French brandy maker Remy Martin established Chateau Remy (now Blue Pyrenees Estate) to make wine destined for distillation into brandybrandy.

The 1970s saw Mount Avoca, Taltarni and Warrenmang established with the aim of making premium red wines. During the ensuing decades others followed with the Pyrenees wine region now has about two dozen wineries, all producing very good dry red wine.

Shiraz, Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon are the most popular varieties, but a few wineries are now using alternative varieties, particularly Sangiovese, Nebbiolo and Tempranillo.

Of interest is the St Ignatius Vineyard Who have planted some Torrentes, a white wine variety from the Diaz family's former home country Argentina.

More recently more exotic varieties such as Nero d'Avola and Mencia have been introduced.

An new variety in the Pyrenees Wine Region: Mencia from North West Spain.An new variety in the Pyrenees Wine Region: Mencia from North West Spain. Image from Quartz Hill

Alternative varieties in the Pyrenees wine region

  • Dogrock Winery Tempranillo
  • Fletcher Nebbiolo
  • Gwynnyth Vineyards Chenin blanc
  • Massoni Barbera, Sangiovese
  • Mitchell Harris Wines Sangiovese
  • Mount Avoca Lagrein, Sangiovese, Nebbiolo
  • Pyren Vineyard Durif, Malbec, Nero d'Avola, Petit verdot
  • Quartz Hill Wines Mencia
  • Quoin Hill Tempranillo
  • Romantic Vineyard Petit verdot, Tempranillo
  • Sally's Paddock Cabernet franc
  • St Ignatius Vineyard Carmenere, Malbec, Sangiovese, Torrontes
  • Sum of the Few Nebbiolo
  • Taltarni Sangiovese
  • Warrenmang Vineyard Barbera, Dolcetto, Gewurztraminer, Nebbiolo, Sangiovese

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Visiting the Pyrenees region

The region is just a couple of hours drive north west of Melbourne via the Western and Sunraysia Highways. There are many accommodation choices in and around Avoca, while the Warrenmang Vineyard is part of a resort with accommodation and fine dining facilities.

It is quite easy to combine a wine tour to the Pyrenees wine region with visits to the nearby Grampians and Bendigo wine regions.


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