A dreamy valley situated in the midst of the Victoria High Country emerged as a haven for abundant and healthy café culture. King Valley is home to the burgeoning wine industry brought by several immigrant Italian families. The Pizzinis and other Italian clans operating the wine industry in the area brought back to life this remote yet promising valley. The secluded haven is 3-hour drive from the Melbourne metro and used to be known for its tobacco cropping trade.
The Italian wine aficionados started as normal Italians who want to make their Italian-style wines. They started planting Shiraz and cabernet along with the fresh vegetables they grow for self-sufficiency in a not so known area in King Valley. What started out as a pastime for the first generation of Italian immigrants offered them a saving grace for their dying tobacco business.
From tobacco, their industry moved into planting grapes from a smaller to a more expansive variety. When the families expanded their vineyards and grape varieties were soon cultivated, the business ventures grew into the present day winemaking industry.
Two families pioneered the blooming wine production in King Valley, the Pizzini’s and Dal Zotto’s who created the prosecco wine variety inspired from the old country. From the winemaking industry, other business ventures were embarked upon by the Pizzini family including the family-owned Mountain View Hotel and a cooking school.
The Dal Zottos also flourished in their wine empire with a vegetable patch to supply their family-owned restaurant. The Dal Zottos also manoeuvred the debut of prosecco or sparkling wine in Australia in 2004 which was later recognised with awards along with several other wineries in the area. King Valley’s summit is home to the prosperous wineries while Milawa in the Victorian High Country is known as the gourmet capital of the region.