Wine and Dine at: Laura, Pt Leo Estate
Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula really is a must-visit destination for foodies and wine lovers. Located a leisurely one-hour drive from Melbourne, it’s a region that has it all – world-class wine, award-winning restaurants, stunning seascapes, pristine countryside, plus unforgettable art and cultural experiences.
With its two-hatted restaurant, Laura, and the bistro-style, one-hatted Pt. Leo Estate Restaurant, an all-weather Wine Terrace and cellar door, Pt Leo Estate is a jewel in the Mornington Peninsula’s crown.
Along with offering stunning wines and exceptional culinary treats, Pt Leo Estate boasts 180-degree views over Western Port to Phillip Island that are absolutely breathtaking.
With just 45 seats, Laura delivers an intimate dining experience. The set menu of five courses tells the story of the Mornington Peninsula with culinary director Phil Wood scouring local producers, whether from the sea, paddocks or pastures, to feature only the very best of the region.
“We want to be a true representation of this beautiful part of Australia where every farm and winery is not more than ten minutes from the sea,” Phil explains.
“We’re surrounded by farms, orchards, groves and wineries, so I’m really passionate about genuine seasonality of produce and design our menus based on what is available and in peak season at any time,” he says. “Working with local farmers and producers to profile the agricultural diversity of the Mornington Peninsula and help secure its agricultural future is so important.”
“Our approach requires us to be in close communication with our suppliers about how, for example, a particular crop is going. We also have a kitchen garden on the property, and have plans to expand how we’re using it.”
PHIL WOOD’S MUST-TRY LAURA DISHES
While every morsel on the menu is absolutely delectable, here are some of Phil’s must-try Laura dishes:
- Potato duchess cauliflower, shiitake
- Great Ocean Road duck with seasonal accompaniments
- Western Port Bay Wagyu with seasonal accompaniments
- Liquid-centred custard fondant dessert (pictured above)
A WALK ON THE WINE SIDE
Head sommelier Andrew Murch has created an incredible 50-page wine list with regional, Australian and international wines all featured. A testament to its popularity and diversity, in 2019 Laura picked up Hottest Wine Programme from the Weekend Australian’s magazine. Regional Victorian wineries feature heavily including many from the Mornington Peninsula and, of course, Pt Leo Estate’s own wines – predominantly Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.
“Sitting within a region and state famous for producing wine, we are proud to have a 100% Victorian wine list at Pt Leo Restaurant and a much larger list at Laura, with a focus on great Champagnes alongside regional Victorian wines and the best from the old and new world,” explains Andrew.
“The wine list for Laura has been curated to complement Phil Wood’s culinary interpretation of the Mornington Peninsula. The collection celebrates the diversity of wine and its unique ability to take us on an endlessly rich and fulfilling journey,” he says.
“We will willingly match a drink to each course. The matched wines are a handpicked selection from our cellar that enhance and support the flavours our 5-course menu. We will feature wines from Pt Leo Estate, while including other domestic gems and a splattering of international treasures. We also have a designated driver’s match which equates to one and half glasses of wine, or alcohol-free options.”
And, if you’re looking for something more casual, the all-weather Wine Terrace offers live music on the weekends, and with gorgeous views across the vineyards, it’s the perfect place to chill with a glass of wine in hand.
For more on the Mornington Peninsula, check out our guide to the top cellar door experiences in the region!