Australia is becoming increasingly popular with wine lovers. Growers in the new world are not subject to as many regulations as in the old world and have the freedom to be more experimental which has resulted in exciting new tastes being developed all over the country. A great way to get to know what is available is to visit the source. Vineyard tours and cellar door tastings are fun, informative ways to spend sunny days enjoying wonderful flavours and aromas. Tour operators and hotels offer guided excursions around nearby wineries many of which include transportation, entry fees and wine and food at all locations for full, fuss-free enjoyment.
Hunter Valley (NSW)
South of Sydney and west of Newcastle lies the Hunter Valley, arguably the birthplace of Australian wine production and home to some of the oldest wine families in the country. Famous worldwide for its Semillon grapes, Hunter Valley provides the perfect climate for a diverse range of wines including the full-bodied Verdelhos. For rustic charm and romance, stay for a weekend in Hunter which boasts a great range of boutique hotels and cosy guesthouses.
Yarra Valley (VIC)
Home to wineries producing high quality classic varieties, the Yarra Valley is also known for progressive development of vibrant new styles. The region’s cool climate gives it the edge in producing especially fine Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, many of which have won awards.
Barossa Valley (SA)
The Barossa region is famed for its European heritage and places emphasis on appreciating its fine wines alongside great food. Tradition is important and the culture of hospitality makes for an enjoyable visit. It is home to around 750 grape-growing families and distinct regional tastes include Barossa Shiraz and Eden Valley Riesling.
Margaret River (WA)
A relative newcomer, the Margaret River region now commands around 20% of the world’s modern wine market. Characterised by passion and progress and set in gorgeous scenery, it is an area well worth a visit.