Review: Horses, Wine and Beer Tour with Show Me Melbourne inner banner

Review: Horses, Wine and Beer Tour with Show Me Melbourne

Melbourne is home to 'the race that stops a nation' and this tour will introduce you to many former champions of the track at Living Legends. You'll also have the opportunity to taste-test the wares of a local winery and boutique brewery.
Review: Horses, Wine and Beer Tour from Melbourne
Horses, Wine and Beer Tour from Melbourne
Horses, Wine and Beer Tour from Melbourne: Living Legends

Top Oz Tours offers a great range of Melbourne tours and experiences. You can book this tour here.

Sadly, since we published this story, Rogan Josh has passed away. He’ll be sorely missed, and our thoughts are with all of the team at Living Legends.

Whether you’re into horse racing or not, you have to admire the pure athleticism of these majestic creatures.

Located 30 minutes’ drive north of Melbourne, Living Legends is a rural property that’s home to a number of retired equine stars. Show Me Melbourne offers a tour to the facility called Horses, Wine and Beer. It combines a visit to Living Legends with stops at a local winery and a boutique brewery. Now, as someone who loves nothing better than a cheeky punt and a pint during the Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival, I couldn’t think of a nicer way to spend a day!


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I meet tour guide Simon and the rest of the group at Melbourne’s Federation Square. Simon is very knowledgeable about horse racing. In fact, I’d call him a walking stats man! Before too long, we’re cruising up the long driveway at Living Legends, which Simon describes as ‘a retirement village for racehorses’. The significance of the name becomes clearer when we meet some of the residents, who between them have earned hundreds of millions of dollars in prize money.

Horses, Wine and Beer Tour from Melbourne
Horses, Wine and Beer Tour from Melbourne: Living Legends. Image: Chris Bright

After a quick tour of the historic main house (built in 1843), we’re treated to a cuppa and traditional scones with jam and cream. Head trainer Eleanor arrives to show us around and as you would expect, she knows just about everything there is to know about her beloved charges. Every one of them has a story.

The horses are usually paired up or kept in groups of three. Eleanor explains that quite often the horses are familiar with one another, having trained together during their careers.

Horses, Wine and Beer Tour from Melbourne
Horses, Wine and Beer Tour from Melbourne. Image: Chris Bright

Firstly we meet Good Ba Ba, then Silent Witness — formerly the world’s top ranked turf sprinter. Efficient and Zipping (referred to as ‘Fish & Zip’!) are fairly standoffish until Eleanor lures them over with some feed. Brew, Fields Of Omagh (referred to as ‘FOO’) and Super Impressive put on a show as they receive their daily shower. Melbourne Cup winner Brew seems to love the water.

Watch our video of ten top things to do in Melbourne:

10 Top Things to Do in Melbourne, Victoria, 2022 | Melbourne City Guide

Welcome to Top Oz Tours’ YouTube channel! In this episode of our online travel series, we bring you ten fabulous things to do in Melbourne.

Paris Lane and Better Loosen Up (both Caulfield Cup winners) call Living Legends home, as do Rogan Josh and Apache Cat — who Eleanor describes as proper ‘BFFs’. Ex-racehorse and police mount Chief De Beers bunks in with big winners Maluckyday and California Memory, and Melbourne Cup winner Might and Power has the most unlikely of stable mates — a miniature horse named Toby!

Horses, Wine and Beer Tour from Melbourne
Horses, Wine and Beer Tour from Melbourne. Image: Chris Bright

Bidding the residents at Living Legends farewell, we hit the road towards the quaint town of Woodend — home to the famous Holgate Brewhouse. Holgate brews its own small batch beers; some are part of the regular line-up, while others are experimentals that change with the seasons.

On arrival at the brewery we’re presented with a tasting paddle of eight different beers, including two of Holgate’s most popular brews — Export Hills and an American-style IPA called Road Trip. There’s a chocolate porter named Temptress, a Belgian IPA known as Unflemished, the Hopinator and the 8% Belgian-style ‘Dubbel’ Abbey Ale called Double Trouble. They’re all sensational.

Holgate is also our lunch stop, and we get to choose a meal from the menu of classic pub fare.

Horses, Wine and Beer Tour from Melbourne
Horses, Wine and Beer Tour from Melbourne: Hanging Rock Winery. Image: Adam Ford

It’s soon time to move on to our final stop — Hanging Rock Winery — for a tasting. We work our way through the estate’s excellent product list, which features peppery pinot noirs and crisp, clean whites.

On the way back to the city some of the group chat quietly, while others drift off to sleep. This Horses, Wine and Beer Tour from Melbourne has been a champion day out!

The writer travelled as a guest of Show Me Melbourne. You can book this tour here.

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Additional images: Bigstock

Chris Bright

About the writer

Chris Bright is a freelance writer based in Melbourne with a passion for travel, food, music, and film. He’s travelled to South-East Asia, India, Japan, parts of Europe, and much of North America. Chris is willing to try anything once, whether it’s leaping from great heights or eating things that don’t look the least bit appetising. When it comes to travel, he loves nothing more than meeting new people and sharing a laugh over their local drink of choice.

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