The Best Orange Wineries and Cellar Doors
It may seem like a recent success story, but Orange’s grapevine roots extend as far back as the 19th century. Take a tour of this highland, cool climate hotspot’s top-flight wineries and cellar doors, to discover why Orange is the new black in the world of wine.
Since the 1980s, Orange has evolved beyond its legacy as a centre of table grape production. Less than four hours by car from Sydney, it has now truly established itself as one of Australia’s gourmet food and wine destinations and a cool climate region par excellence.
From its embrace of biodynamics to its rich basalt soils - a legacy of the long-extinct Mount Canobolas – Orange’s elevation, geology and culture mark it out as somewhere quite special for critics and wine-lovers alike.
Now home to over 60 vineyards and wineries planting everything from outstanding Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon to top-shelf Chardonnay, Gewürztraminer and Sangiovese, comparisons to other iconic wine regions like the Mornington Peninsula are becoming more commonplace as customers become more aware of what Orange has to offer.
There’s so much to take in that we’ve compiled a list of highlights for you: our top picks of Orange’s premium wineries and cellar doors. Let’s begin!
Brangayne of Orange
Brangayne of Orange is a family owned vineyard that has been producing distinctive cool climate wines from its high elevation location for over 20 years.
Located at an elevation of 970m on the slopes of Mount Canobolas, Brangayne has been part of the Hoskins Family story since the 1930s, where for sixty years Edgar and Winsome Hoskins – and later, Don and Pamela – grew apples, pears, peaches and cherries on the property.
In 1994, the fruit trees were replaced by vines, and today the vineyard continues the generational story under the watch of David Hoskins, specialising in Sauvignon Blanc and Riesling, Isolde Reserve Chardonnay, and its signature Tristan blend (composed of Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz and Merlot).
While you’re there, visit the unique cellar door in the old apple cool store, try some of their single vineyard wines, and take in some of the sweeping views on offer.
837 Pinnacle Road, Orange
Open Sunday to Friday 11am-4pm, Saturday 11am-5pm.
A proudly Australian family owned and operated business, the vision for Nashdale Lane began in 2001. Husband and wife team Nick and Tanya Segger are hands-on and passionate in what they do, and have built a winery that is focused on ethical practices and a respect for the land.
Situated in the highlands of Orange on 60 acres at the foot of Mount Canobolas, the vineyard produces a range of quality varietals such as Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Gris, Riesling, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Tempranillo and Shiraz, as well as quality blends under their ‘social’ label.
Positioned almost 900m above sea level, visitors can enjoy the refreshing mountain air and the vistas while sampling the wines at the cellar door, a 60-year old converted apple packing shed. Fully insulated with unobstructed views and a wood fire for those chilly days, it’s a great place to enjoy a matched wine, cheese and charcuterie tasting you won’t soon forget.
There’s even luxury glamping available, giving you a private escape among the vines in a distinctly Australian getaway – though do note that children are not permitted to stay in the glamping cabins.
125 Nashdale Lane, Nashdale
Open Monday and Friday, 12pm-4pm, Saturday and Sunday 11am-5pm.
Situated in the fertile southern slopes of Mount Canobolas, Angullong is one of the Orange region’s most awarded wineries. With its range of traditional and alternative varieties, this cool climate winegrower has repeatedly won acclaim for the quality of their wines.
Such attention to detail and quality is a legacy of Angullong’s rich pastoral heritage. The Crossing family purchased the property in 1950, farming sheep and cattle. Since 1998, they’ve grown grapes which, due to the high elevation and cool climate, enjoy a long, cool ripening period that instils a lovely, natural acidity, supporting elegant fruit flavours.
The cellar door is located in the nearby village of Millthorpe, in the beautiful stone stables on the corner of Park and Victoria Streets. Visitors can expect a memorable experience that is intimate, enjoyable and relaxed with the full Angullong range available for tastings – including a number of Cellar Door exclusive wines.
Corner Park & Victoria Street, Millthorpe
Open seven days, 11am-5pm.
Family-owned and operated by brothers Ed and Dave Swift, the story of Printhie Wines began in 1978, when the Swifts became only the third owners of the ‘Printhie’ property, named for a now-extinct goanna like lizard once common to the area.
In 1996, it was converted into a vineyard with 12ha of grapevines. The winery followed in 2004 as the plantings expanded to 33ha, and soon Printhie had established itself among the premier Orange wine producers with a reputation for cool climate craftsmanship.
With four different vineyards at differing elevations, a great deal of planning went into making Printhie what it is today, to ensure the highest quality fruit for their wines. Of the four vineyards, ‘Wattleview’ can lay claim to being the highest vineyard in the Orange region at 1068m above sea level.
Set right next to their 700-tonne winery, Printhie’s Cellar Door is a wonderful place to relax and taste their still and sparkling wines, including their Swift Sparkling range. Made to the traditional French method, it is considered now to be one of Australia’s best Sparklings, picking up 18 awards in 2018 alone and earning the Best Sparkling Trophy at the 2018 NSW Wine Awards.
Printhie continues to grow, with a new Cellar Door expected to open in 2020 at their ‘Millwood’ vineyard, set amidst a fully operational heritage apple orchard at Nashdale on the slopes of Mount Canobolas. Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier and Chardonnay have been planted for the Sparkling Swift range, and it will feature a restaurant and rolling views.
489 Yuranigh Rd, Molong
Open Monday to Saturday, 10am-4pm.
With 17 Trophies awarded in their first three years of operation, Colmar can make a strong claim to being the Orange region’s most awarded vineyard, turning the 30-year dream of vignerons Bill and Jane Shrapnel into a reality.
Bursting onto the wine scene in 2014 with some stunning and rightfully celebrated white varieties and Pinot Noirs, their vineyard produces sensational cool climate wines similar to that produced by the classic wine regions of France – Chardonnay, Riesling, Pinot Gris and Traminer, as well as Sauvignon Blanc.
Named for the beautiful old town of Colmar in Alsace, France, Colmar Estate is located in one of Orange’s most picturesque areas, with their Cellar Door well worth a visit.
790 Pinnacle Rd, Orange
Open Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays, 10.30am-5pm. All other times by appointment.
Heifer Station Wines
Located on the basalt slopes of Mount Canobolas and spanning 65 acres of red loam soils over limestone up to an altitude of 900m, Heifer Station was once part of a much larger property used by Cobb & Co. as a change station for their horse teams. Over the years Heifer Station was split up, and its history all but lost.
The preservation of that history is an important part of the vision of founders Phillip and Michelle Stivens, who purchased the property in 2009. It has since flourished, producing award-winning Shiraz along with Chardonnay, Pinot Gris and Merlot, enjoying a near-perfect balance of elevation and sunshine perfect for growing cool climate fruit with drive and elegance.
In 2016 they opened a beautiful Cellar Door in the old woolshed, and haven’t stopped since. There’s also vineyard tours and roaming tastings, numerous picnic sites you can reserve for that special occasion, and a kids petting zoo and farm. You can even arrive in style with a helicopter landing – though make sure to book first, as the landing area is a working cattle paddock!
1034 The Escort Way, Borenore
Open seven days, 11am-5pm.
Operated by Tom and Georgie Ward since 2008, Swinging Bridge has evolved into a premier supplier of cool climate wines. Founded with initial plantings of Chardonnay and Shiraz, today it produces a range of wines that have won a number of awards.
It also brings a unique Cellar Door experience to the Orange region, showcasing the hard work and vision of Tom as winemaker. With one of the best views of Mount Canobolas in the district, visitors can sample the best of the winery’s individual selected block series, their best of Orange region wines and their hashtag wine series.
It’s a premium sit-down tasting experience which was awarded 2018’s Gourmet Traveller Wine Best Cellar Door in Region, and a great way to spend the day with friends taking in the view.
701 The Escort Way, Orange
Open Sunday to Friday 12pm-4pm, Saturday 10am-4pm.
A boutique winery based on the edge of Mount Canobolas and dedicated to crafting wines that exemplify the terroir of the region, the Cook family estate works with a number of small growers in Orange from several vineyards across different altitudes and soils, with a shared focus on growing premium fruit.
The resulting wines have been celebrated by noted figures not only for their quality, but their modest pricing, and winemaker Duncan Cook celebrated for crafting wines of distinction, elegance and complexity. They can be tasted at Ferment, the Orange Wine Centre, a modern European-inspired space in a preserved heritage building near the heart of town.
Ferment’s Enomatic wine dispenser allows you to sample a range of exceptional local wines, all of which are available for purchase. Plus, wines can be matched to cheese or salami boards.
87 Hill St, Orange
Open Tuesday to Saturday, 11am-7pm. Sundays by appointment.
The Cellar Door vista at Highland Heritage is expansive, overlooking the Summer Hill Creek Valley towards the original “Wellwood” homestead that was constructed in the early 1840s. The Highland Heritage Estate vineyard was once a part of the original “Wellwood” run.
The knowledgeable staff at Highland Heritage and their warm welcome awaits you at their cellar door, located at the gateway of the Orange vineyards.
Highland Heritage’s award-winning wines, along with an eclectic range of dessert styles and fortifieds, are all available for tasting.
Elevate your senses while soaking up the unique atmosphere at Highland Heritage’s cellar door.
4968 Mitchell Highway, Orange
Open seven days 10am-5pm.
The 508 hectares of Cumulus Wines’ high altitude vineyard constitutes one of the largest single-estate properties in New South Wales and one of the few dual appellation vineyards in the country.
Established in 1995, Cumulus is one of the most awarded wineries in the region, with premium cool climate wines that are fruit-forward and easy to drink, grown from vines that are among the oldest in the region.
Their range extends across a number of varietals and brands, with their Cumulus Estate Wines grown from premium blocks of Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Shiraz, whole bunch pressed, natural yeast barrel fermented and matured in a combination of French and American oak for 12 months.
Wine tastings are available at Ferment, the Orange Wine Centre.
87 Hill Street, Orange
Open Tuesday to Saturday 11am-7pm. Sundays by appointment.
Orange really is a must-visit region for any wine lover. Discover more about the vibrant food and wine scene it has to offer visitors in our Selector feature on the area!