The King Valley: a slice of Italy in our own backyard
Take a trip to the King Valley in Victoria’s High Country and you could easily believe that you’d arrived at Tuscany in Italy. Located at the foothills of the Alpine National Park, this picturesque region features rugged mountains, flowing rivers and rolling vineyards. And not to mention plenty of amazing Italian inspired food and wine!
Since the 1880s, the rich fertile soils of the King Valley region were used to grow a variety of crops such as hops and tobacco. Following the end of World War II, a large number of Italian migrants settled in the area. Soon after they recognised the massive potential of the region to produce European wine varietals including Prosecco, Nebbiolo, Sangiovese, Pinot Grigio, Dolcetto, Arneis and Barbera. Names such as Pizzini, Dal Zotto, Corsini, Sartori, Ciccone and Politini have since become famous for their Italian style produce and hospitality. These families amongst others brought long-established traditions of winemaking and regional cuisines which you see here today.
Our home in the King Valley for a few days is Lusso KV; one of the newest boutique accommodation additions to the centre of Whitfield. Owners, Trent and Sarah Crothers (from Wodonga) have honoured the region’s history by creating an industrial style tobacco kiln entrance and by naming it Lusso (Italian for luxury). Built from mostly recycled local materials the accommodation features some unique elements including a double sided red-brick fire-place, a bare-boned staircase, polished concrete flooring and a huge dining room table (made from timber and steel salvaged from an old shed at the back of the property). Despite living an hour from Whitfield, the young Crothers family have embraced the easy-going pace of High Country life and visit whenever they can.