Hand-selected wines from 500+
Australian wineries delivered to your door!

Alert

The maximum quantity permitted for this item is , if you wish to purchase more please call 1300 303 307
Wine

Your Definitive Hunter Valley Cellar Door Guide and Map

Plan the perfect escape to the Hunter Valley wineries and cellar doors with our carefully curated guide, list, and map to this premier wine region. 

There’s a fantastic range of Hunter Valley cellar doors to visit within a two-hour drive from Sydney or a 40-minute trip from Newcastle. To help plan your trip to this dynamic wine region , we’ve selected a collection of wineries that provide the best cellar door experience, plus we’ve included a handy interactive map below.

While the region is famous for its ShirazChardonnay and Semillon , there’s also a stunning selection of innovative new varieties on offer. You can also find out more about the region in the Hunter Valley guide we’ve put together here.

HUNTER VALLEY WINERIES LIST

With so many great cellar doors in the region, we’ve grouped our list into journeys through the region along the Hunter Valley’s iconic roads. Take a trip from Pokolbin to Broke with a sojourn along Hermitage Road to visit the world class wineries of Tyrrell’s, Margan, De Iuliis and Andrew Thomas Wines on the alluvial flats. Or you can spend the day following McDonald’s Road through the heart of Pokolbin to visit the myriad of innovative wineries for which the Hunter Valley is renowned.

EXPLORE LOVEDALE

Journey through the heart of Lovedale via Wine Country Drive.

HUNGERFORD HILL AND MUSE RESTAURANT

The Hungerford Hill winery, designed by renowned architect Walter Barda, incorporates a spectacular barrel-shaped tasting room in which you can sample exemplary wines from the Hunter, as well as from the cool climate regions of Tumbarumba and the Hilltops of Southern New South Wales. Join the EPIC Tasting Experience Wednesday to Sunday between 11 am and 3 pm on a guided tasting of their limited release wines matched to bite-sized dishes prepared by the acclaimed Muse Restaurant and Cafe (reservations are essential).

2450 Broke Road, Pokolbin – view on our Hunter Valley cellar door map

Open Daily 10 am to 5 pm

Visit the Hungerford Hill website

DOMAINE DE BINET

Domaine de Binet is leading the charge for left of centre experimental wines, alternate varieties, and blends. It is rare to call in and not be able to chat to the entertaining husband and wife duo of Dan and Nat at this family-run winery.

467 Lovedale Rd, Lovedale – view on our Hunter Valley cellar door map

Open Friday to Sunday 10 am to 4 pm

Visit the Domaine de Binet website

HOPE ESTATE

Hope Estate is a destination in its own right with a great cellar door, the Hope Brewhouse, the Harvest Restaurant, and sweeping views of rolling vineyards and picturesque lakes.

2213 Broke Road, Pokolbin – view on our Hunter Valley cellar door map

Open Daily 10 am to 5 pm

Visit the Hope Estate website

PEPPER TREE WINES

The stunning grounds, the old convent, Circa 86 restaurant and the gardens that surround the Pepper Tree Wines cellar door are an essential stop on your next visit to the Hunter Valley. With their consistently high-quality wines, Pepper Tree are a stalwart of the Hunter Valley.

86 Halls Road, Pokolbin – view on our Hunter Valley cellar door map

Open Monday to Friday 9 am to 5 pm and Saturday to Sunday 9:30 am to 5 pm

Visit the Pepper Tree Wines website

EXPLORE BROKE AND HERMITAGE ROAD

Unearth the rustic township of Broke with a stop or two along Hermitage Road. 

TYRRELL’S

This salt of the earth Hunter Valley winery is a must-see destination, so is the tour of the old oak vats and the original red dirt cellar. Tyrrell’s have won many international medals and Trophies throughout their near 160-year history. Yet, they never rest on their laurels, continuing to impress on the world stage, earning respect as perhaps the most consistently high-achieving winery in the country.

1838 Broke Rd, Pokolbin – view on our Hunter Valley cellar door map

Open Mon – Sat 9 am to 5 pm; Sun 10 am to 4 pm

Visit the Tyrrell’s website

LEOGATE ESTATE WINES

Just along from Tyrrell’s is this distinctive cellar door and estate. A relative newcomer to the Hunter Valley, Leogate are quickly establishing themselves as a rising star due in no small part to securing accomplished winemaker Mark Woods to lead the winery.

1693 Broke Road – view on our Hunter Valley cellar door map

Open Daily 10 am to 5 pm

Visit the Leogate Estate website

MARGAN WINES & RESTAURANT

This striking Hunter Valley cellar door nestled amongst the vines is the perfect venue to sample their estate grown and made wines of a fine pedigree. This local focus translates to the superb Margan Restaurant, featuring ingredients from their kitchen garden, orchard, beehives and free range produce. Andrew Margan pioneered traditional and alternate varieties in the Broke region.

1238 Milbrodale Rd, Broke – view on our Hunter Valley cellar door map

Visit the Margan website

DE IULIIS WINES

This modern, architect designed cellar door matches perfectly with Michael De Iuliis’ carefully constructed wines. Given he won the 2015 Hunter Valley Winemaker of the Year at the Hunter Valley Legends awards, his wines are sure to impress. As is the view over the Brokenback Mountain Range from the observation tower.

1616 Broke Road – view on our Hunter Valley cellar door map

Open daily 10 am to 5 pm

Visit the De Iuliis website

HUNTER'S DREAM

Discover the unforgettable tranquility and beauty of the estate owned and managed by renowned health care company, Nature’s Care. Hunter’s Dream is one of the oldest boutique wineries in the region first established over a half a century ago. Now, many years and vintages later the newly opened cellar doors are producing an award wining collection under the guiding influence of winemaker Kees van de Scheur. Come and taste some of the best wines the lower Hunter has to offer amidst an oasis of sprawling lavender fields, ripe olive groves and a serene Japanese garden..

149 Deasys Road – view on our Hunter Valley Winery map

Open daily 10 am to 4 pm Mon-Fri 10 am to 4:30 pm Sat-Sun

Visit the Hunter's Dream website

DAVID HOOK WINES

Set in a provincial-style sandstone building, this boutique winery specialises in single vineyard drops from the Hunter’s traditional varieties of Semillon, Chardonnay, and Shiraz, as well as emerging grape varieties such as Pinot Grigio and Barbera. While you're there, you can explore the grounds, and surrounds of the Peppers Barrel Room or enjoy a spot of breakfast or lunch at Cafe Enzo.

Crn Broke & Ekerts Road, Pokolbin – view on our Hunter Valley Winery map

Open Daily 10 am to 4:30 pm

Visit the David Hook website

ANDREW THOMAS WINES

This sleek, boutique and modern cellar door is the perfect place to sample Thomas Wines’ uncompromising single vineyard wines. The 2014 Hunter Valley Winemaker of the Year, Andrew Thomas only produces the region's renowned varieties of Semillon and Shiraz, allowing your tasting experience to uniquely examine and note the subtle differences across a focused bracket of his medal and Trophy winning wines.

Cnr Hermitage Road and Mistletoe Lane, Pokolbin – view on our Hunter Valley Winery map

Open Daily 10 am to 5 pm

Visit the Andrew Thomas Wines website

KEITH TULLOCH WINES

The Keith Tulloch Wines estate is world class with its grand buildings and gorgeous courtyard encompassing the cellar door, winery, Muse Kitchen, and Cocoa Nib artisan chocolate cafe. The unique tasting experience out on the verandah overlooking the sprawling vineyard and Brokenback Mountain Range will make a memorable stop on your next visit to the Hunter Valley

Cnr Hermitage and Deasys Road, Pokolbin NSW – view on our Hunter Valley Winery map

Open daily 10 am to 5 pm

Visit the Keith Tulloch Wines website

EXPLORE THE HEART OF POKOLBIN

Explore the stunning array of new and old names along McDonalds Road with a stop at Pokolbin Village.

USHER TINKLER CELLAR DOOR AND SALUMI

Set in the original Pokolbin church, this cellar door renovated by Usher and Ebony Tinkler, blurs the lines between a traditional and contemporary wine experience. Their approach to wine tasting incorporates the food and wine lifestyle. Usher’s excellent wines can be accompanied with a superb range of local and imported Salumi and Cheese, making it a unique social destination.

97 McDonalds Rd, Pokolbin – view on our Hunter Valley Winery Map

Open Daily 10 am to 5 pm

Visit the Usher Tinkler website

AUDREY WILKINSON

As one of the oldest vineyards in the Hunter Valley, the Audrey Wilkinson Cellar Door and Winery is not to be missed on your next visit. The winemaking museum, housed in the original winery, the heritage-listed open cement vats and the spectacular views over their 270-acre winery are reason enough to visit. However, the true star is the spectacular selection of fine Semillon, Shiraz, and Verdelho on offer.

750 De Beyers Rd, Pokolbin – view on our Hunter Valley Winery Map

Open Daily 10 am to 5 pm

Visit the Audrey Wilkinson website

BROKENWOOD

Next door to McGuigan wines is Brokenwood, an institution in the Hunter Valley, consistently producing excellent wines and picking up awards for their Shiraz and Semillon. The friendly hospitality and the great selection of excellent wines for tasting are superb. The ‘tour & taste’, available for their members, offers the unique chance to explore the winemaking process and taste straight from the barrel!

401-427 McDonalds Rd, Pokolbin – view on our Hunter Valley Winery Map

Open Mon-Sat 9:30 am to 5 pm, Sunday 10 am to 5 pm

Visit the Brokenwood website

HART & HUNTER

Winemaking duo Jodie and Damien focus on sourcing the best fruit, letting the individual vineyards in each of their wines shine. This rustic cellar door is a great setting to experience the unique impact of the differing terroir in the Hunter Valley.

463 Deasys Rd, Pokolbin NSW 2320 – view on our Hunter Valley Winery Map

Open Thur-Sun 10 am to 4 pm

Visit the Hart & Hunter website

MCGUIGAN WINES

The quality and consistency of McGuigan Wines can’t be overstated, especially given they won the International Winemaker of the Year award in 2016 for a record 4th time. Stop by their relaxed cellar door to taste the wide range of quality wine on offer, or book for the tour of the winery, which departs daily at 12 noon. It is conveniently located next to the Hunter Valley Gardens, Hunter Valley Cheese Company and adjacent to Roche Estate in the heart of Pokolbin.

Corner of Broke & McDonalds Roads, Pokolbin NSW 2320 - view on our Hunter Valley Winery Map

Open Daily

Visit the McGuigan Wines Cellar Door

SMALL WINEMAKER’S CENTRE

This Hunter Valley cellar door has been showcasing the best of the Hunter Valley for 30 years. With an enviable line-up of winemakers such as the Little Wine Company, Thomas Wines, Silkman, David Hook and Hart & Hunter, the Small Winemaker’s Centre is a must visit for anyone seeking out the best boutique producers. From iconic Hunter Valley Semillon and Shiraz, to emerging varieties such as Vermentino, Barbera and Tempranillo, there are over 45 wines on offer. This is a very warm and welcoming cellar door with uber-friendly staff dedicated to guiding visitors on a wonderful wine journey.

426 McDonalds Rd, Pokolbin NSW 2320 – view on our Hunter Valley Winery Map

Open Daily 10 am to 5 pm

Visit the Small Winemaker’s Centre website

TAMBURLAINE ORGANIC WINES

As Australia’s largest producer of organic wines, Tamburlaine is a pioneer of innovative organic winemaking and vineyard management in the region. Incorporating practical and sustainable strategies, they continue to produce a swag of award-winning wine with a relaxed and generous approach, which translates through to their cellar door staff.

358 McDonalds Road Pokolbin – view on our Hunter Valley Winery Map

Open Daily 9 am to 5 pm

Visit the Tamburlaine website

TULLOCH WINES

Tulloch Wines are an institution in the Hunter Valley, who continually impress with the classic varieties that made them famous through to their innovative new varieties in their unique Cellar Door Release range. Their cellar door is excellent with casual tastings upstairs overlooking the stunning vista or with their pre-booked alternate variety tastings in their stunning restaurant downstairs.

638 De Beyers Rd, Pokolbin – view on our Hunter Valley Winery Map

Open daily 10 am to 5 pm

Visit the Tulloch Wines website

FIRST CREEK WINES

This cellar door is a hive of activity as one of the largest winemaking and bottling providers in the region. Many wineries and vineyards trust their precious drops to First Creek’s Chief Winemaker Liz Silkman, the Hunter Valley Winemaker of the Year in 2011 and 2016. With this unrivalled access to the region's best vineyards, it's little wonder First Creek have amassed an impressive 14 Trophies and 29 Gold medals since 2015.

600 McDonalds Rd Pokolbin - view on our Hunter Valley Winery Map

Open Daily Mon-Sat 9:30 am to 5 pm Sun 9:30 am to 4 pm

Visit the First Creek website

 

EXPLORE MOUNT VIEW

Rediscover the iconic wineries in the hills between Mount View and McDonald’s Road.

DRAYTON’S FAMILY WINES

This iconic cellar door, rebuilt recently after the tragic 2008 winery accident, has a long history stretching back to Joseph Drayton, who arrived in the Hunter in 1853. With a great range of traditional styles through to their renowned range of fortified and stickies, Drayton’s is well worth a visit.

555 Oakey Creek Rd, Pokolbin NSW 2320 - view on our Hunter Valley Winery map

Open Daily Mon-Fri 8 am to 5 pm, Sat-Sun 10 am to 5 pm

Visit the Drayton’s Family Wines Website

MT PLEASANT WINES

Mt Pleasant is an iconic, family-run Hunter Valley winery with a long and superb history of producing fine wine. The future is bright too, with Jim Chatto at the helm of their winemaking efforts, producing a growing range of alternate and innovative wines.

401 Marrowbone Road Pokolbin – view on our Hunter Valley Winery map

Open Daily 10am - 4pm

Visit the Mount Pleasant website

PETERSONS WINES

Situated on a small hill surrounded by vineyards, the position is perfect, with uninterrupted views of Mount Sugarloaf and the Watagan Mountains. This warm and friendly cellar door is the ideal place to taste their delightful award-winning wines.

552 Mount View Road Mount – view on our Hunter Valley Winery map

Open Mon-Sat 9 am to 5 pm Sunday 10 am to 5 pm

Visit the Petersons Wines website

Hunter Valley Winery Map

Planning a trip to the Hunter Valley? Download our interactive Hunter Valley winery map. To save on your browser or device, click here

For more information on visiting the Hunter Valley, be sure to visit the official Hunter Valley Wine Country website or stop by the Visitors Centre in Lovedale when you're in the area. But, if you’d like to sample some of the wineries listed in this guide before you visit, explore our wide selection of Hunter Valley wines and find out more about the wineries listed in this guide in our Meet the Makers section.

And, with our Hunter Valley Releases program, you can experience the best the Hunter Valley has to offer from the comfort of home. You’ll discover wines from regional icons such as Tyrrell’s and Tulloch, through to unique drops from the Valley’s leading boutique wineries. Visit our Hunter Valley Releases page to find out more!

You might also like

Wine
South Australian Wine Regions
Explore the South Australia regions that are keeping Australia on the world wine stage. Adelaide Hills Adelaide Hills ’ cool climate means vibrant whites are the lifeblood of the region with punchy expressions of Sauvignon Blanc and fine restrained Chardonnay being the two traditional white varietals. However, with its unique topography that creates several microclimates, the region is also perfect for Pinot Gris and Pinot Grigio. The hilly nature of this beautiful wine region creates different levels of altitude and aspects. In the vineyards with a sunnier aspect, the style of Pinot G is rich and ripe, while on the sites with less sun, the Pinot G is lighter and crisper. Barossa Valley The Barossa Valley is arguably Australia’s most famous wine region. Classified as warm climate, the Barossa provides excellent conditions for full-bodied wines with Shiraz , Cabernet Sauvignon and Grenache dominating the red plantings. Home to some of the world’s oldest Shiraz vines, the Barossa makes bold, earthy Shiraz with characters of currants, plums, mulberries and milk chocolate. 
  Yalumba , Australia’s oldest family owned winery has lead the charge into newer styles planting and developing alternative varietals like Viognier and Tempranillo . McLaren Vale
 McLaren Vale is one of the most geologically diverse wine regions in the world with unique interactions between geology, soils, elevation, slope, aspect, rainfall, distance from the coast and macro-climatic differences all contributing factors. With 3000 hectares of Shiraz vines, the milder nights and afternoon sea breezes create wines full of chocolatey richness with black fruit, violet, pepper and dark chocolate flavours. While its hero varietal is Shiraz, McLaren Vale’s amazing landscape of geology makes it a truly special place to create a diverse range of wines. Local wineries like d’Arenberg , Primo Estate , Stephen Pannell, Richard Hamilton and Serafino are growing alternative varieties like Tempranillo, Sangiovese, Touriga, Mataro and Montepulciano alongside classic varietals of Shiraz, Cabernet and Grenache . Clare Valley Riesling is the hero in Clare Valley , making delicious wines with great depth and intensity, which can be enjoyed in the freshness of their youth or cellared with confidence for many years, taking on greater complexities while retaining their vibrant line of acidity. Elevation is one of the factors that makes Clare such a prime region for grape growing and particularly for Riesling and Shiraz. Although not technically considered a ‘cool-climate’ area, most of the vineyards are planted at between 400 and 500 metres above sea level, meaning cool to cold nights during the growing season. Given its distance from the ocean, the region is also quite continental, so warm to hot during the day and quite dry while the vines are ripening their fruit. This diurnal temperature range makes for grapes with robust flavours and spicy acid freshness. Although Clare Valley is more famously known for its Riesling, it’s the same climatic conditions that help to produce its unique style of red wine with the three top varieties being Shiraz, Cabernet and Grenache. Clare Valley reds present a delicious contradiction. On one hand they're big and bold, yet on the other, underlying acidity creates beautiful elegance. Coonawarra There’s no doubt that Coonawarra is home to Australia’s classic Cabernet Sauvignon. With its warm, dry summer days, cool to cold nights and terra rossa soil, the Coonawarra climate is similar to France's Bordeaux, so naturally, it's perfect for Cabernet! 
 
Measuring just 12km long and 2km wide, Coonawarra’s famed terra rossa strip is some of Australia’s best grape-growing land. While the vines have to struggle to flourish, they produce small berries with naturally high skin to juice ratio, mind-blowing colour and flavour intensity, and wonderful tannin structure. When it comes to Cabernet, it creates unique expressions featuring cassis and blackberry characters with spice and minerally complexity. Along with Cabernet, the region also produces award-winning Riesling from wineries like Patrick of Coonawarra and Leconfield. Their Merlot is a must try along with the Di Giorgio Family Wines Sparkling Pinot Noir and Botrytis Semillon. Eden Valley The Eden Valley is an amazing region, capable of producing perfect cool climate wines from Chardonnay to Zinfandel, but it is more often recognised for Shiraz and Riesling. Bordering the Barossa Valley, the Eden Valley’s altitude, cooler temperatures and cool nights produce wines with elegance and good acid structure. For most wine lovers, Eden Valley is famous for dry, crisp Riesling and elegant Shiraz. But there are plenty of producers who are seeing success with other varietals. Yalumba has almost single-handedly made Viognier a household name, while also having great success with Chardonnay and seeing a future for Roussanne and Tempranillo. Thorn-Clarke are turning plenty of heads with their Pinot Gris while Henschke produce some stunning Cabernet when “the conditions are warm enough” as well as Nebbiolo and Semillon. Irvine Wines, who have long championed Merlot, also have substantial plantings of Shiraz, Pinot Gris, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Riesling and Zinfandel spread across six vineyard sites. Try some of South Australia’s stellar wines for yourself today!
Life
17 Must Do Hunter Valley Experiences
Words by Shonagh Walker on 8 May 2017
The Hunter Valley isn't just about cellar doors. Shonagh Walker uncovers a host of activities that may well see you extend your stay. While it's widely known as the destination to uncover  boutique cellar doors  and  world-famous wines , the Hunter Valley has another face that it's worked hard on showing to the world. From balloon rides to nature walks, festivals to art amongst the vines and even animal sanctuaries that will melt your heart, you're spoiled for choice when it comes to filling your itinerary on your weekend or family holiday. Here's a list of some of our getaway inspirations. Be Cheesy Cheese lovers should make a B-line for  The Sebel Kirkton Park  on Saturday June 17 and Sunday June 18, which mark the annual Cheese Lovers Festival. Highlights include 50 exclusive stalls featuring cheese, beer, wine and assorted cheese-related food stalls, cooking with cheese workshops, beer and cheese workshops and cheese making classes. Preceding the official start of the festival is the Classic Cheese Dinner on Friday June 16. Get Cooking Millfield Hall Cooking School caters for corporate and private groups of eight to 20 people. All produce used is local and seasonal, with citrus and herbs grown in the Hall's garden and eggs coming straight from their own chook pen. Prices are usually around $145 per class, which includes a glass of wine, however, bespoke tutorials can include anything from roasting an entire beast and beer tasting, to matching courses with local wines, which might up the price a bit. millfieldhall.com.au Organic Fare Run by partners Matty and Jimmy Kerr, Nanna Kerr's Kitchen is a mostly organic restaurant and is a huge favourite with locals and tourists alike. Famed for dishes taken from the Kerr matriarch's menu and its farm to table ethos, this restaurant also boasts a retail space where you can purchase the pickles, relishes and jams served on site. Don't miss the Dirty Chai Pannacotta, which was created to celebrate Nanna Kerr's recent 80th birthday. Be Proud You'll have a blast during the second annual Pokolbin Pride Festival, which this year again sees local businesses band together with wine tasting tours, live entertainment, fine dining and cocktail parties, community markets, guided bike riding winery tours and more. The festival runs from October 20-22. pokolbinpride.com.au A Day On The Green Hit Bimbadgen for this not-to-be-missed event where you'll get your fix of local and international acts teamed with a great selection of wine. This year has already seen rock icons Blondie and Cyndi Lauper entertain, with more acts every summer. When major celebs aren't singing, you can enjoy Esca restaurant and sip a generous wine selection at the cellar door. bimbadgen.com.au Take To The Skies If you fancy yourself a bit of a pilot, then Hunter Valley Joy Flights is for you. Located at Cessnock airport, the company offers Tiger Moth adventure flights where you man the cockpit and fly the plane solo once in the air (an experienced pilot is there to guide you at all times). A less adrenaline-inducing way to get elevated is by Hot Air Balloon. Hunter Valley Ballooning offers exclusive and group flights out of its Lovedale HQ every day and is a peaceful and unique way to take in the views of the region huntervalleyjoyflights.com.au Inspire Your Green Thumb With over 60 acres of international display gardens, you can easily while away a day or two in the lush haven that is the Hunter Valley Gardens, situated conveniently in the Pokolbin region. There's over eight kilometres of walking paths to explore, which reveal 10 individual feature gardens each with a unique theme. The Storybook Garden with its topiary animals including horses, teddy bears and ducks will delight kids of all ages. The Lakes Walk will take you past waterfalls, babbling brooks, Weeping Willows, a chapel and rotunda and stunning seasonal flora. The Rose Garden features over 150 varieties of roses, with around 8000 fragrant and beautiful roses in bloom and the Formal Garden, a nod to French and British garden designs, will transfix you with its manicured hedges, evergreen magnolia and 3000 bushes of Rosa chameleon roses. Make sure you stop by the Wishing Fountain - all proceeds from your wish are donated to local charities. A favourite of this scribe though, is the Italian Grotto, with its Statue of Saint Francis of Assisi (Patron Saint of Animals and the Environment), its lush lavender hedges and incredible bougainvillea. Winter marks the annual Snow Time festival (June 24 to July 16), with a giant ice-skating rink, mega ice toboggan and tubing. You can also build a snowman at in the man-made Snow Play Zone. huntervalleygardens.com.au The Block Four luxury self-contained villas and a three bedroom guesthouse comprise the secluded but stunning accommodation and winery of Block 8. Soak up views of orchards, olive groves, grapevines, open fields and distant mountain ranges as you meet kangaroos and wallabies, sugar gliders, swans and goannas. You can even pat a couple of pigs and handfeed the ducks. Guests also receive bottles of the estate-grown single vineyard wines, generous breakfast hampers and home-baked treats for afternoon tea. blockeight.com.au Get Artsy Sculptures in the Vineyards happens throughout November, stretching across Undercliff Winery and Gallery, Stonehurst Cedar Creek Wines, Wollombi Wines and Noyce Brothers Wine. Works are by renowned local and national artists, with an estimated 100 pieces planned for 2017. sculptureinthevineyards.com.au On Your Bike As the original bike hire company in the region, Grapemobile Bicycle Hire and Tours really know their stuff. Rent from the centrally located vineyard and hire shop in Pokolbin, where you can take a private off road self-guided tour amongst the vines, sampling wines from up to nine vineyards on the way (some even provide free delivery of your purchases to the bike's hire shop). You can also choose to have the Grapemobile bus pick you up and return you from your accommodation or meeting place. All tours include mountain bikes, retro cruisers or tandems, helmets, sunscreen, bottled water, numbered VIP access pass, maps and tour options. grapemobile.com.au Organic Spa Experience There's a plethora of day spas peppered around the Hunter. UBIKA spa at the Crowne Plaza in Lovedale is noteworthy, thanks to its alliance with certified organic skin care brand, Eminence Organics. Hailing from Hungary, this nurturing range relies on ingredients such as blueberries, Arctic berries, and pomegranate. Choose from an array of facials and body treatments including Vichy showers, wraps and exfoliation. Other fantastic spa experiences include iconic Spa Elysia Golden Door, which has partnered with Certified Organic skin care range, Divine Woman and Chateau Elan at The Vintage, where you can enjoy a glass of bubbles in the outdoor Jacuzzi before or after your treatment. crowneplazahuntervalley.com.au goldendoor.com.au ,  chateauelan.com.au Luxe Getaway Just Desserts Sweet tooth? Book a table at Sabor. Famed for its Portuguese Chocolate Mousse made from owner Fernando's grandmother's recipe from 70 years ago, there are over 50 desserts on the menu and each can be paired beautifully with local wines. There are gluten-free options too, as well as Glinelli coffee and a selection of teas. saborinthehunter.com.au A Berry Nice Time Few things taste as sweet as organic, bio-dynamically farmed blueberries, fresh from the bush. At Misty Valley Farm, you can pick your own punnet and enjoy the intense flavour straight away, or freeze your harvest for up to two years. Berry picking season is Dec/Jan, but at other times you can lap up the farm environment in the boutique accommodation, which sleeps up to four people and includes organic farm fresh eggs in the breakfast hamper. mistyvalleyblueberries.com Take A Stroll If you're still feeling energetic and want (or need) to walk off a few calories, take one of several walking trails through Barrington Tops National Park. Choose from easy walks, overnight hikes, or simply enjoy a picnic by the stunning Barrington Tops Falls. Those after more action can 4WD. nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/visit-a-park/parks/barrington-tops-national-park See Pigs Fly Where Pigs Fly is a registered charity and sanctuary located in the Lower Hunter region, dedicated to rescuing, rehabilitating and caring for farmed animals that have been treated cruelly, abused or neglected. With various open days and sanctuary tours (bookings essential) throughout the year, the team is committed to educating guests about the importance of treating all animals with compassion and respect. An open day will see you mingling with pigs, lambs, chickens and cows, living life as they should be - free range and organically. wherepigsfly.org Lush Lavender Daniela Riccio bought Little Valley Lavender Farm five years ago and while she still grows over 100 lavender bushes, the farm is mostly an organic garlic producer, alpaca breeding base and fleece retailer, bee keeper and miniature cattle grazier. It's is also a part of the Department of Primary Industries' Visit My Farm program, whereby city slickers can spend a day learning about farm life. littlevalleyfarm.com.au
Wine
Wine Traveler Riverland
Words by Dave Brookes on 28 Dec 2017
While South Australia’s riverland region has always been famous for bulk wine production, innovative local winemakers are changing the landscape by planting a range of grape varieties perfectly suited to the hot, dry climate. As I sit down to pen this brief piece on the Riverland , I’m reminded of the words of that great American philosopher LL Cool J who rhymed, “don’t call it a comeback; I’ve been here for years; I’m rockin my peers; Puttin’ suckers in fear”. Mic drop from Queens. Perhaps I’m getting carried away. I’ve always been told I have a fertile imagination, but who would have thought a decade ago that boutique winemakers from Margaret River to Coonawarra would be sourcing fruit from the Riverland and proudly displaying that fact on their wine labels? The Riverland has always been, along with several other regions that lie along the life-giving artery of the Murray, the engine-room of the Australian wine industry. The Riverland accounts for over 50% of South Australia’s wine crush and around 30% of the national total, some 470,123 tonnes in 2017. It is a very important region for Australian wine. One winery alone, Berri Estates, is the largest grape processor in the southern hemisphere, crushing some 220,000 tonnes of grapes annually or around one-third of the total grape crush of South Australia. Several years ago, I recall driving with the Berri Estates winemaker to the crushers; a journey through a huge truck marshalling area complete with traffic wardens. He turned to me and said, “Can you feel the romance?” Funny, but the sheer scale of the operation was astounding. The Riverland is also a region well aware of the hardships of farming; of extended droughts and the plunging grape prices of boom & bust cycles. But the droughts, while devastating for growers already struggling with low grape prices, have forced some changes for the better. Included among them are sustainable irrigation, drought hardy rootstock and clonal research, and the planting of alternative varieties, or, as one local winemaker described them, “appropriate varieties.” King of grapes
One of the larger producers is Kingston Estate, established by Greek immigrants, Nina & Steve Moularadellis in the mid-1980s after they met picking grapes in the early 1960s. Today, you can still find them in the winery most days, but it is son Bill who steers the ship. Kingston Estate produce a range of wines that offer great value for money and drinking pleasure. Their portfolio centres around the European classic varieties, but for me, when I think of the estate, it is their Petit Verdot that springs to mind and it is certainly a variety they have hung their hat on. Deeply coloured and laden with rich fruit and spice, it possesses an ample structure with plenty of ripe tannin and is a variety that seems to thrive in the warmer climes of the Riverland. Salena Estate, another of the larger operators, has around 520 acres under vine, roughly half of which is certified organic. Their range includes classic varieties, across different price points that provide great drinking, and their ‘Ink’ series concentrates on the ‘appropriate’ varieties with some great examples including Montepulciano , Graciano, Bianco d’Alessano and Vermentino . The Banrock Station cellar door is top-notch with the complete range of wines available for tasting, a great little restaurant if you are feeling peckish and the amazing wetlands ecosystem with walking trails if you need to stretch your legs. The Angove cellar door in Renmark is another must visit for the quality and diversity of their range of wines with fruit sourced from the Riverland and further afield across South Australia. In recent times, the interest in sourcing fruit from the Riverland by winemakers based outside the region has been pleasing to see. There are several factors at play here. Better farming practices and increased interest in some of the varieties that end in ‘O’ that seem well suited to the region are certainly in the mix. Another is the tireless efforts, boundless energy and great farming nous of Ashley Ratcliff of Ricca Terra Farms, who has done much to raise the profile of the Riverland as a source of well-farmed, alternative varieties. Part of this nous was knowing when to take a risk on doing something new. As he explains, “During the boom times in the Riverland, grape prices were up and getting people to change their practices was hard. Why would you decrease your yields and plant new varieties? When things turned, however, others panicked, but we were brave; buying up vineyards and planting alternative varieties that now fetch sustainable prices.” Ashley’s Ricca Terra Farms is just outside Bamera and is planted with many of the varieties that are now sought after in the region – Nero d’Avola , Fiano , Vermentino , Montepulciano , Zibbibo, Muscato Giallo and the curiously named, Slankamenca Bela. As well as supplying grapes for other winemakers, Ashley has his own ‘Ricca Terra’ label featuring inventive blends of these varieties. Another producer riding the wave of the alternative varieties that are well-suited to the Riverland is Alex Russell Wines. Viticulturist and winemaker Alex Russell crafts a range of delicious wines from Montepulciano, Vermentino, and Lagrein to Nero d’Avola, Saperavi and Graciano. Alex’s range of wines hold true to the tenet that a wines ‘raison d’etre’ is to be above all else, delicious to drink and they have picked up a swathe of awards at the Australian Alternative Varieties Wine Show in Mildura . small names, big impression
Other small local producers who farm in a thoughtful, sustainable fashion to seek out include Whistling Kite, whose biodynamically farmed range includes a fantastic Petit Manseng and a Montepulciano that is a benchmark for the region. The organically farmed Bassham Wines is another, with delicious, racy whites including Vermentino and Fiano, along with lovely examples of Lagrein, Nero d’Avola and Graciano. Also check out 919 Wines, whose range of table wines provides beautiful drinking across both the classic and alternative varieties, including a killer Pale Dry Apera style. And last but not least, the Delinquent Wine Co has a fantastic range of funkily packaged wines for “drinkin, not thinkin”, featuring new wave varieties, including the very drinkable Bianco d’Alessano Pet Nat Sparkling. Of the producers from further afield who proudly source fruit from the Riverland, the list is growing. Sue Bell from Bellwether Wines in Coonawarra produces a fantastic, award-winning Nero d’Avola Rosé and crisp, textural Bianco d’Alessano; Margaret River based winemaker Brad Wehr of Amato Vino produces a dangerously drinkable Riverland range including a wonderful Slankamenca Bela. In the Adelaide Hills, Unico Zela features amazing Fiano, Nero d’Avola and an enchanting skin-contact white blend. And from McLaren Vale, ex-NYC sommelier Brad Hickey of Brash Higgins Wines crafts a heady, textural Zibbibo using grapes from Ricca Terra Farms vineyard. a bright future
Riverland is on the up and up and if you haven’t sampled its wines, now is the time. Perhaps its reputation has been unfairly tarnished as a source of lower-end, bulk wine offerings, but today the wines have never been better and there is an undercurrent of innovation, sustainable viticulture and experimentation that bodes very well for its future.
Two Blues Sauvignon Blanc 2014
1 case has been added to your cart.
Cart total: xxx
1 case, 12 bottles, 3 accessories