The original Australians, the Wurundjeri people, have known the Yarra Valley as their homeland for at least 35,000 years. Their heritage is still evident in the names of waterways and landmarks. The Yarra River river flows from the Dandenong Ranges through the valley and out into Port Philip, a site now known as Melbourne.
In the early 1800s, as the pioneering town of Melbourne was just beginning, hardy settlers ventured inland from Melbourne to explore the upper reaches of the Yarra River. Initially, their search was for gold but it soon became apparent that at Melbourne’s back door lay the Yarra Valley with the potential to be a food bowl for the city.
In 1837 Scottish pioneering brothers William, Donald and James Ryrie accompanied by two convict stockmen and 250 head of stock set out from New South Wales to find new pastures for their cattle. They settled on an elevated area in the Yarra Valley overlooking the Yarra river and built a bark hut as their humble accommodation. They named their property ‘Yering,’ the original aboriginal name. This was the site where today we find Chateau Yering.
But significantly the brothers had also included in their baggage vine cuttings which they planted. In 1845 the Yarra Valley produced its first vintage.
By 1850 over an acre of vines was producing wine and when Swiss immigrant Paul de Castella made an offer to buy the property the deal was sealed with a home-made wine they grandly called ‘Chateau Yering.’
Paul built a luxury mansion on his land, finishing the construction in 1854. His home was acknowledged as one of Victoria’s finest dwellings, visited by the leaders of Melbourne’s society for ‘weekends in the country.’ This house still exists today and the Library, Chinese Room, and Lounge are in their 1854 testifying to the luxury enjoyed by Victoria’s lucky few. Although the Wine Cellar actually predates the house as it was built by the Ryries in the 1840s.
The dining room for the house was extended and today is called Eleonore’s after Paul De Castellas wife, a refined lady used to a life of luxury and privileges.
Over the next forty years the De Castella family expanded their grape plantings and created three of the Yarra Valley’s iconic wineries, St Huberts, Chateau Yering and Yeringberg. But to everyone’s surprise the wines they produced turned out to be award winners. In 1880 one of their wines won the German Emperor’s Grand Prize for the Best Australian Wine Exhibitor in the Great Melbourne Exhibition.
Today the world has discovered the benefits of Australia’s leading cold climate wine region. Some of the great champagne houses of France have partnership deals with Yarra Valley wineries and the reds are applauded world wide.
So what better background for Chateau Yering in Victoria’s Yarra Valley. A world renowned wine region, a magnificent valley of fertile soils, and a history of luxury and fine dining. When you choose from the accommodation available at Chateau Yering you know you’ll be part of over 160 years of luxury and pampering.