Educating people about wine is what we do well at Innocent Bystander. Arneis is a varietal from the Piedmont region and a wine rescued from the brink of extinction – it’s a great fruit-driven wine with a spicy back palate. It’s not a well-known wine, most people say they haven’t heard of it before; however, we find it a wonderful wine to try as a stepping stone between a Pinot Gris and a Chardonnay. Arneis is known as a ‘rascal’ wine and was often a sacrificial grape, planted next to the Nebbiolo to attract the birds away from its more prized fruit. It’s low cropping and presents a challenge to grow, but when its done right, as we’ve managed to achieve, it’s a fantastic wine.
We decided to make Innocent Bystander Prosecco because we loved drinking it. A great prosecco is drinkable any time of the day. We enjoy it at breakfast, but it holds up well right across the day and into the evening. It’s drier than our moscato and lends itself to many types of food. People might not realise we pick our prosecco fruit at night as that gives us the best opportunity to manage the fruit sugars. It’s aged on lees for a lovely ‘champagne texture and flavour’. Our prosecco fruit is grown in the King Valley, which is considered the spiritual home of prosecco in Australia.
The Innocent Bystander Moscato is one of our most popular wines. It’s naturally sweet and naturally bubbly. We call it ‘the party starter’. Our moscato is unique as it is made from a combination of Muscat Gordo and Muscat Hamburg grapes. The magical pink tinge of our moscato comes from leaving the Muscat Hamburg skins, which are almost black, in contact with the Muscat Gordo press for just three hours of contact.
You can take home our specially priced ‘Wine Trilogy of Italy’ wine pack, which includes one bottle each of Moscato, Prosecco and Arneis, from our cellar door during November.
When it comes to pizza our philosophy is keep it simple. We focus on quality local ingredients, and we source some incredible ‘specialty’ additions that make our pizzas a uniquely ‘Innocent Bystander’ experience.
Pizza dough is the foundation of a great pizza and we’re really proud of our dough. We hand-stretch our dough – there's not a rolling pin in sight. It’s a traditional method that keeps the air in the dough and ensures the pizza base is light and super crisp with a delicious puffy crust. Our dough also cold proves for 48 hours, which allows the flavour to fully develop.
Our Ciao Yarra Valley Ciao celebration brings together a fabulous pizza, a great wine and an Italian movie from the program at The Memo in Healesville. Three great Italian experiences in one – a trilogy of Italy!
Hugh McCorkell, Hospitality and Retail Operations Manager, Innocent Bystander