Curate your picnic plate this summer with some of the best produce from grocers and markets in the region.

With local brews, wines, fruits and cheeses, olives and homemade cakes readily available, you can turn your picnic into a regional foodie adventure exploring the extraordinary markets, stores and providores in central Victoria.

Ruby Goose Foods in Trentham is owned and run by former chef (Circa, Pope Joan) Reggie Webb. Curated as a farmers’ market in a shop, the grocer has a stunning selection of locally sourced fruit and vegetables, smoked meats and charcuterie from neighbouring Oakwood smokehouse, cheeses from Holy Goat in Sutton Grange, and homemade biscuits from Beatties Biscuits in Trentham. If curating your own plate is not your thing, bring your own basket and let Reggie do the picnic prep for you to take to the nearby Wombat Forest.

Plan your weekend in regional Victoria with an early morning visit to a farmers’ market. Lancefield Farmers’ Market is held once a month and is one of the biggest in the area. With an abundance of local growers displaying their best produce available, it’s hard to choose where to begin. Plan your picnic with several snack-friendly courses in mind as an outdoor degustation: breads, cheeses, fruits, nuts, something sweet and don’t forget the local drop! For an extra treat, arrive at the market early to pick the prettiest of posies to complete your al fresco vibe.

Whilst in town, stop by the Lancefield Providore to secure a selection of homemade dips, crackers and preserves to complete your basket. It’s very important to grab an ice chai made with locally sourced ingredients from Anushka Chai, as a reward for all the hard work you have done.

Over in Daylesford, the iconic corner store location of Blake Family Grocers is as inviting as they come. Filled to the brim with local produce, this is the place to go to discover groceries ready for your gourmet basket. Get in early to score a local loaf of artisan bread, which you can top with homemade jam or marmalade from the store’s overwhelmingly delicious array of spreads and conserves.

What’s a platter without a pork pie? It’s no lie that Piper Street Food Co in Kyneton make the best pork pies in the region. Fill your basket with gherkins, pickled onions, goats cheese, candied nuts and of course a side of hot English mustard for your pie, all made in store at this legendary Kyneton foodie hangout.

Alternatively, let the team at Daylesford Picnic Boxes do the hard work for you. Inside these carefully curated boxes you’ll find a selection of savoury and sweet treats by small-batch makers from the Daylesford area. In addition to being delicious, it’s also environmentally friendly, with each box containing a handy little ‘keep kit’ which can be used time and time again.

With your hamper brimming with local goodies, it’s time to find a grassy knoll for you to lay down your tartan carpet.
For waterside moments, try the Metcalfe Cascades which offers a toe-dipping cooling off experience, shady canoodling spots and picnic tables for a more formal picnic spread.

Vaughan Springs delivers a riverside view, providing a dress circle seat for your picnic display. There is also spring water on tap to add to your local curation of fine food and drink.

Wombat Hill Gardens in Daylesford offers a shady afternoon spot, perfect for resting and snacking after a big morning at the markets.
For full picnic perfection, offers a nature-filled backdrop where you can set up your snack suite in style and whittle away the afternoon hours.

About the author

Ali Webb House of Webb
Ali Webb, House of Webb
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Kyneton-based Ali Webb adventures the state as a tiny tourist, exploring the littlest to the largest corners of our sweet slice of Victorian heaven.

A writer, a publicist, an artist manager and a downright good human being, Ali’s a curious cat, always on the hunt for a tale to share, especially if it involves digging for treasure in a local secondhand haven, scouring the seasonal delights of our favourite kitchens or simply finding a golden spot to pitch her tent after a day of bushwalking. Follow her tiny tourist tracks across the state at @houseofwebb.