The Yarra Valley and Dandenong Ranges offer a huge range of award-winning wines and cocktails, quality multicultural dishes, restaurants and cafes showcasing local produce and culinary talent creating the food we love to eat.
If you’re dining in our region, take the time to discover these incredible signature dishes and the unique stories behind what makes them some of the best bites and bevs.
In the heart of the Yarra Valley, Levantine Hill Estate has been growing grapes from their vineyards and producing spectacular wines for more than 30 years. Their onsite restaurant and cellar door makes the most of its location with its architecture, featuring grand high ceilings and sweeping curves that blend seamlessly in the rolling hills surrounding it.
The bespoke menu features both food and wine flights which unlock the opportunity to try some of the rarest and most expensive wines in the world, as part of a ‘benchmark’ wine tasting experience. You can also choose to enjoy the full multi-course lunch menu where you choose your number of courses from their mediterranean-inspired menu and enjoy.
The Signature Dish
Levantine Hill head chef Vinnie Robinson has created a dish that can only be described as a handmade pillow of delicious truffled coat’s curd-filled egg pasta finished with raisin, pine nuts, and pine tree oil.
“Cappelletti translates to 'little hats' in Italian and refers to the tiny point shape at the top, which is what differentiates it from tortellini,” says chef Robinson. “What also makes our Cappelletti so special is that it is made with local Dobsons potatoes, grown here in Victoria, by generations of family. We simply salt bake the potatoes and finish them with flour, before working the gluten. It is much like a gnocchi dough but without the eggs.”
“The inspiration for this dish originally came from when our cheese supplier, Yarra Valley Dairy, brought in some amazing goat's curd ('fromage frais') to sample,” he adds. “The goat's curd was combined with the Yarra Valley’s finest truffle farmer, Stuart Dunbar, from Woori Yallock, located only 15 minutes away from our restaurant. The fresh black truffles are a result of Stuart’s dedication and passion for his produce, and are a fitting match for Levantine Hill’s pursuit of perfection in all that we do.”
Robinson says that hand making the Cappelletti is an art form, which requires hours of training and true expertise.
“Every element of the process must be perfect, the potatoes need the right starch content, followed by being cooked perfectly, and 'riced' straight away while hot, before adding flour, stretching the gluten and making the dough with just the right amount of saffron. The goat’s curd filling must be hung for one week before being finished with fresh black truffles and chives. Our chefs practice making the dough for 2-3 months before they progress to training on shaping the Cappelletti. Shaping the Cappelletti is the real masterclass that can take upwards of 2 months before mastering the technique.”
The Cappelletti is available in the 'Indulge' section of the lunch menu, available with the 7-dish menu option.
“Customers dining on our 5-dish menu can of course purchase this special dish in addition to their other courses. Anything is possible,” he adds.
“The Cappelletti is a beloved dish that has been on our menu for years. Our customers won’t let us remove it! It is not just a Levantine Hill signature dish, but a Yarra Valley one, as it brings together the very best of what our local produce has to offer, hand crafted to perfection.”
Try it for yourself when you visit Levantine Hill.
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