Rare Hare

There’s a buzz in the air in the Mornington Peninsula, and it comes in the form of a contemporary cutting edge designer hotel, formal restaurant, smart bar, casual dining experience and cellar door.  The name is Jackalope – and it’s the new home of Willow Creek Vineyard Wines. So what is a Jackalope? A Jackalope is a mythical North American folklore character – a rabbit with antlers – and this mythical symbol has been brought to life with a breathtaking sculpture by Emily Floyd, a Melbourne artist who is most famous for The Bird and the Worm on Eastlink.  This seven-metre magnificent Jackalope sculpture proudly sits in the forecourt of the property. Extraordinary, contemporary and bold, the Jackalope property is indeed a unique environment from a design point of view. There is so much more to cover, but the focus of this postcard is Rare Hare - a casual environment, with a food offering that is generous, honest and great value.

A touch of Finesse at Tanglewood

In the heart of rural Merricks, surrounded by towering Eucalypts and dappled light; a sumptuous space lies hidden amongst the vines of Tanglewood Estate. It was here 40 strangers met for a feast unlike any other. The inaugural 'Small Batch' Speakeasy event saw Husband and Wife team Brad and Roong Holtz, of Finesse Catering Group, partner with Mornington Peninsula Brewery, Main Ridge Olive Oil, Commonfolk Coffee and Tanglewood Wines to exhibit of some of the best the Pen has to offer.

Alatonero

A long-term love affair with Santorini, and a passion for Greek food, has brought a new culinary vibe to the Mornington Peninsula. Across the road from the McCrae lighthouse (at what was The Pavilion), Alatonero is giving diners the opportunity to enjoy well known and much loved Greek delicacies. With an impressive resume in the food world, and with energy and drive to burn, Jacqui Poulier found the perfect location for her new venture, where she has brought to life her love of food, cooking, people and stories. The restaurant is light, bright, open and airy with a fresh sea breeze that drifts through the open plan dining area.

Rare Hare at Jackalope Hotel

There’s a buzz in the air on Mornington Peninsula, and it comes in the form of a contemporary cutting edge designer hotel, formal restaurant, smart bar, casual dining experience and cellar door. The name is Jackalope – and it’s the new home of Willow Creek Vineyard Wines. The vision of Louis Li's, a 29 year old Chinese national who has been living in Melbourne for ten years, Willow Creek Vineyard is now the site for the world’s first Jackalope Hotel.  Moving here as an 18 year old to study film making, Louis Li is well versed in luxury property development with his parents being involved in a number of luxury hotels and residential properties in Kunming in south western China.  So in a sense his first solo project is following in the tradition of his family business.   Being a film maker Lewis Lee is a great storyteller, and his first foray into hospitality shows his appetite for art and design and food culture, which shines through every element in this property.  His debut Jackalope Hotel in Merricks will be followed by a 40 room hotel in Flinders Lane which is scheduled to open in 2019.

Terracotta Wine at Trofeo Estate

Trofeo Estate is situated on the iconic Harrisons Road precinct of Dromana - in the 1930’s it was a passionfruit plantation - it is one of the Peninsula’s oldest vineyards but newest wineries. From the moment you enter the property, with it’s oak lined driveway, you’re surrounded by vines & beautiful rural views. Its peaceful location is a world away from the hustle & bustle of Dromana’s main strip.

Finesse Catering Group

Brad and Roong Holtz of Finesse Catering Group are a formidable team. Passionate, creative and classically trained, their worlds collided when Brad attended one of Roong’s cooking classes in Chiang Mai in northern Thailand, where Roong taught tourists and professional chefs the art of traditional Thai cooking. At the time Brad was working as a chef on small private yachts in Alaska and Mexico but they found a way to be together, moving to the Mornington Peninsula in 2007.

Butterfly Retreats

Butterfly Retreats in Red Hill is an experience for the whole family. Set on four acres of cleared grassland with mature European trees, fruit trees and an olive grove, there is something special to experience everywhere you wander throughout this picturesque property. Nestled between Lindenderry at Red Hill and Eldridge Estate, the property is flanked by vineyards providing a colourful vista ever changing with the seasons.