Sunny Ridge Strawberry Farm
244 Shands Road, Main Ridge, VIC
03 5989 4500
A visit to Sunny Ridge Strawberry Farm between November and April will bring memories of days gone by as you taste and pick your own strawberries, enjoying the flavours of sun-ripened berries rarely found on today's supermarket shelves.
You become the farmer as you pick your way through the rows of berries at the Main Ridge Farm during U-Pick season. You can also savour a berry dessert at the café, or enjoy the myriad of strawberry goodies for sale at the store.
Sunny Ridge Farms is owned and run by husband and wife partners, Mick and Anne Gallace. Starting with their parents’ small farm which was bought in 1964, the family has grown the business to be the largest producer of strawberries in Australia. Today, the farms consist of almost 300 acres of strawberries growing on the Mornington Peninsula and also on recently purchased land in the Yarra Valley and Sunshine Coast, Queensland.
The strawberries come from all three properties and they grow over 8 million punnets per year. They were the first in Australia to commercially grow a number of successful varieties such as Albion and the Cal giant series. People have commented that their strawberries taste like the fruit did to them when they were younger. It’s the quality that sets them apart, they say. The family attributes the local conditions in Sunny Ridge to the plants’ success, citing volcanic soils and the maritime climate (warm days and cool nights in the summer).
There’s a range of family made Rebello Wines that can be tasted at the Main Ridge store, produced with fruit from the farm by son and daughter-in-law vintners, Matthew and Ruth Gallace. They craft award-winning sparkling
strawberry wines, strawberry port and cream liqueurs. They also produce hard ciders with apples, pears, and the farms berries.
Guests can also purchase a selection of freshly plucked from the stem blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries. Depending on the season, cherries and other stone fruits, including avocados, are also available. There’s a selection of locally made honey, olive oil, and chocolate fudge. For the true berry-lovers, there are also strawberry themed mementos.
And for that sweet tooth, a visit to the farm wouldn’t be complete without a stop at The Dessert Café. The Dessert Café features such berry treats as a strawberry chocolate fondue plate for chocolate lovers, or fluffy berry pancakes. There’s a range of farm-made berry ice creams and sorbets.
Try the signature ‘Strawberry Temptation’ featuring ripe Sunny Ridge strawberries, creamy farm-made strawberry ice cream and sorbet, with a dollop of freshly whipped cream and a generous pour of strawberry syrup. Both the shop and dessert cafe were opened in 1997.
Sunny Ridge farm gets visitors from all across the globe. The family works with local and federal tourism bodies to promote their business. They attend trade missions overseas and participate in local events such as the Red Hill Show, the Scarecrow Festival, and the Longest Lunch. They also work in tangent with Rebello Wines and partner with local businesses.