Move over Hunter Valley, Mudgee is New South Wales’ new premium wine region.
Only four hours away from the hustle and bustle of Sydney’s CBD, you’ll find a charming country town filled with friendly folk, sensational produce, wide streets and spectacular wines. It’s the perfect weekend getaway for anyone who has a passion for quality wine. But with so many wineries and so little time to enjoy them all, we’ve picked an assortment of the best spots for you to try, that tick something for everyone.
With the philosophy of “enjoy great wine with friends,” it’s clear to see why Burnbrae Wines is on our list. Owners and husband and wife duo, Andy and Trine Gay have spent the past several years transforming the quaint vineyard into a charming cellar door and boutique accommodation, which has since won numerous awards. Burnbrae has been making wine since 1971, so they certainly know a thing or two about making a delicious drop. Not only are the wines distinctive, but so are each of their labels. They are inspired by Burnbrae, its surrounds and connections to the owners including parrot stars on the Chit Chat Sauvignon Blanc, which are a nod to the colourful birds that chatter above the courtyard, and the Home Ground Shiraz label which includes a branch of the peppercorn tree that stands where the original winery once was. Be sure to pop into the cellar door, which is open Monday to Sunday from 10:00 am – 4:00 pm, and if you fall in love with the winery, why not stay there? With two properties available for rent (Varykino House and The Winemaker’s Cottage), you’ll be able to turn your Burnbrae stay into the ultimate vineyard escape. And what goes better together than wine and pizza? Nothing. So for a match made in heaven head to Burnbrae each Sunday for Lazy Pizza Sundays to enjoy house-made crispy pizza. Plus, every third Sunday of the month you’ll be treated to tunes.
Burnbrae Wines | 548 Hill End Rd, Mudgee
Short Sheep Micro-Winery
What isn’t there to do at the Short Sheep Micro-Winery?! You can sip, shop, sleep and see sheep. A weekend country visit complete in one-stop. The Short Sheep Micro-Winery’s Cellar Door is the only place you can physically purchase these fine drops, made from 25 tonnes of grapes which are crushed each vintage. You’re also welcomed to take a peek inside the Micro-Winery and speak to the head wine maker about small-scale wine making. The best thing about the small team is that they are able to experiment, which results in 1500 sensational cases of wine concocted each year, AND they live by their motto of sustainability. The winery has a team of short sheep that graze all year, as well as grazing cows during the winter in the vineyard, thereby reducing diesel consumption and the use of herbicides. They’re also renowned for their preservative-free shiraz, which is aged for three months in new French oak barrels prior to bottling. If you find yourself enjoying the wine a little too much, why not stay at the Short Sheep Micro-Winery? With three beautiful stays ranging from an entire house, cottage or studio, you’ll be spoilt for choice.
Short Sheep Mirco-Winery | 47 Buckaroo Lne Mudgee
Logan Winery, a premium vineyard located in both Orange and Mudgee, are renowned for all things wine, whether it’s red or white, fizzy or sticky, funky or fruity – the team at Logan love making it, drinking it, and most of all, sharing it. Since 1997, Logan has been growing, making and selling a range of delectable wines; from a premium sparkling Vintage ‘M’ Cuvée, to the quirky and popular Weemala range, the affordable quality of Apple Tree Flat (the newest range) and finally, the Ridge of Tears, which heroes the best of the region. If you’re after a breathtaking cellar door experience, be sure to stop by the Logan Tasting Room. The all-glass space has a bright, welcoming interior that’s perched on the side of a hill with uninterrupted views over Logan Winery Mudgee Vineyard and Apple Tree Flat. Architecturally it’s a beautiful building especially as it sits at ease within the stunning natural surroundings of mountains, bush and vineyards. Enjoy the view with a bottle of wine and a cheese plate, antipasto board or good coffee and a big slice of freshly baked cake (perfect for those who are also on designated driving duty).
Logan Winery | 1320 Castlereagh Hwy, Apple Tree Flat, Mudgee
If you’re looking for a winery with the lot, then Robert Stein is an absolute must-try. From sensational wine, a charming cellar door, a stunning vineyard, a family-run farm, a motorcycle museum and a fine dining restaurant, you’ll be spoilt for choice. Robert Stein is renowned for their chardonnay, shiraz, riesling and gewurztraminer and now, the vineyard has extended to include cabernet, merlot and semillon. The meticulously managed vineyard is surrounded by the farm residents made up of Angus cattle, Dorper sheep and free range Berkshire pigs, all of which roam on native grasses, pasture and winter crops. Much of the produce from the farm is used at the fine dining Pipeclay Pumphouse Restaurant located at the winery as well as the Stein Farm Produce small goods which are available at the cellar door. For the revheads of the wine-loving community, you’ll have the chance to take a peek at Robert’s collection of motorcycles, rare motorcycle collectables and photographs.
Robert Stein | Pipeclay Lne, Mudgee
Here’s one for the small guys. The beautiful Brambletye Vineyard in Mudgee houses seven hectares of vines, a combination of trellised and bush vines which are used to make Slowfox wines. All the fruit is handpicked and made on the small-scale winery on-site. Slowfox Wines also create wild yeast ferments when possible and basket press the smaller batches before putting them in a mixture of French and American oak barrels. Each of the wines are represented in local restaurants and wine bars as well as their eclectically styled cellar door for tastings and sales. If you head to Slowfox Wines be sure to taste their award-winning ripe and beautifully coloured malbec or the light but full-bodied tempranillo. Other standouts include their cabernet and for the white-lovers, the viognier which is picked early to make a beautiful, balanced, light and fresh style tasting, almost like the best parts of a sav blanc and a chardonnay blended together. Now, if you’d like to taste these delicious and special drops, the cellar door is open every weekend to kids and furry friends. If you’re lucky enough to head to the winery on a long weekend or for the Mudgee Wine Festival (in September) you’ll be able to graze on locally sourced produce and sip on wonderful locally roasted coffee.
Slowfox Wines | 196 Black Springs Rd, Mudgee
Feature image via visitnsw.com