Many people consider Melbourne to be Australia’s foodie capital and for good reason. Melbourne seems to have a place for coffee, desserts, wine or international cuisine around every corner. A wide choice of walking food tours will help you discover the markets, restaurants, cafés and food trucks around Melbourne and give you the chance to sample their delicious offerings. If you’re more interested in filling your glass, there are bar crawls and brewery tours to make you feel like a local.
With so many hidden gems scattered around Melbourne CBD and surrounds, you don’t want to waste any time and tours are a great way to see the best bits with a local expert. Warning: Tight jeans are not recommended.
What types of food and drink tours are available in Melbourne?
Café culture is a way of life in Melbourne and these tours show you how it’s done. You’ll find cute laneway cafés where you will learn about the roasting process while tasting various brews. Sometimes a snack or lunch is included.
Take a tour to discover the big name breweries and their micro counterparts around Melbourne. You’ll get to learn about and taste all types of beer as well as have a few snacks along the way.
After taking a bar tour in Melbourne, everyone will want to hang out with you because you’ll know where all the coolest drinking holes are. Normally, you’ll visit five or so establishments where you can enjoy drinks and snacks. These tours vary from discovering civilised rooftop bars to all-out party pub crawls.
If you’ve got a preferred tipple, you can go on a tour and visit five or so drinking establishments that specialise in your favourite drink. Popular day tours to local wine regions like the Yarra Valley are also available.
Take your pick of international cuisine and there’ll be a tour to suit your budget and taste. Also known as food safaris, these experiences let you sample food at quirky restaurants, street food stalls and other hotspots in the CBD and suburbs as well as along the famous laneways. Popular tours take place along Brunswick Street in Fitzroy as well as along Lygon Street for fresh Italian and European cuisine, in Richmond for Vietnamese food and in the Queen Victoria Market for fresh, local produce. These tours are also fantastic for discovering history, architecture and street art.
Got a bit of a sweet tooth? Make sure you’ve room for dessert and taste your way around some of the best chocolates, cakes and gelati in Australia. Usually held in the morning, your guide will show you the best of the laneways or a specific suburb.
This is not a tour per se, but if you’re more of a doer than a taster, make sure to join one of Melbourne’s excellent cookery classes. Many start off with a visit to a local market to pick your produce. After getting the ingredients together, you’ll be guided through preparing a full meal, which you get to consume at the end with the rest of the class. These are available in a variety of cuisines and you’ll also get recipes to recreate your food creations at home.
These are a great way to see the sights along the Yarra River while enjoying a meal served on board or a buffet with wine and drinks. Some cruises are themed for special events such as New Year’s Eve or to tribute acts like Abba.
Wine tours from Melbourne
Visitors to Melbourne can escape to the surrounding countryside and indulge in tours of a day or more, taking in spectacular scenery and vineyards. The most popular are Yarra Valley, Mornington Peninsula and the Great Ocean Road. Designated drivers don’t need to worry as you’ll be picked up and dropped off at your hotel or a central Melbourne location. The focus is on vineyard and cellar door visits as well as tastings, although some tours will focus on beer and cider producers. Tours include a combination of gourmet lunch and artisanal product tastings, such as cheese and chocolate. You’ll also get the chance to meet the creators and chefs as well as experience what it’s like behind the scenes. Day tours typically visit three or four wineries with one or two stops for lunch and food tastings.
How long do food and wine tours in Melbourne take?
Tours for a specific type of food, drink or area typically take 2.5-4 hours while cookery classes and brewery tours might take up to 8 hours. Day tours to local tours generally pick up from Melbourne around 8am and return in the early evening.
How do I book a food or drink tour as a gift?
Sites like Viator let you buy a gift certificate, up to a certain dollar value, which can be redeemed against hundreds of tours. Others, like Groupon, let you purchase the experience as a gift voucher which the recipient can then use when booking a specific date.
Can I combine food and drink with sightseeing?
Walking food tours of Melbourne are ideal for discovering architecture and street art while learning about history along the way. Other examples are combining a balloon ride over Mornington Peninsula with winery visits, riding a historical tramcar dining restaurant around Melbourne CBD or a Puffing Billy steam train ride to the Yarra Valley.
Is everything included in the price?
Almost all tours include food and drink tastings in the price and longer tours often include or give the option to purchase lunch. You’ll have opportunities to buy extra food and drinks, although it’s not obligatory.
How much drink is included in a drink tour?
Wine tasting tours include tastings of a few wines (not full glasses!) at each vineyard while bar tours will normally include one drink per venue. Activities like day trips and dinner cruises normally have an all-inclusive drinks package included or at additional cost.
How many people can go on a food or drink tour?
Most tours are for small groups and are limited to 10 people or fewer. This is so you can have a personal experience and the chance to ask plenty of questions. You can also book a private tour if you have a group of your own.
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