Australia – Day 11 – NSW
I kind of split up my trip Australia in 3 parts: Sydney, Melbourne, and Sydney (and things just outside of Sydney). Now that we’ve returned to Sydney from Melbourne we decided to drive to Hunter Valley and a few other places along the way-ish (more about Terrigal and the Entrance in my next post).
The weather was perfect to head out to Hunter Valley (mainly the city of Cessnock and Pokolbin). It took us about an hour and half nearly 2 hours to get their but it was worth the drive to relax with a few glasses of wine.
I tried to do a little bit of homework before heading to Hunter Valley but decided to just stop at the visitors center (per Auntie’s suggestion) to decide on which wineries to go to.
No one in my family really drinks much wine, so it was all really for the experience. I asked for a few wineries that are pretty and have things to see and possibly do. I picked 2 that are right next to each other: Constable Estate, and Scarbourough.
“What is the definition of a good wine? It should start and end with a SMILE”
205 Gillards Road
Pokolbin NSW 2320
The Constable Estate is a family owned boutique winery located in the lower Hunter Valley area. We drove down the main drag passing several larger wineries (because Auntie kept pointing them out) and then down a much smaller road. Constable was at the very end.
The winery building is a small and simple little cottage like building from the outside. Inside in a small room with a bar area, a couple tables, and a walk out to a cute patio overlooking the rest of the estate.
We decided to sit outside.
The wine tasting culture is a bit different what I’m used to of. I’ve been to Temecula in Southern California for wine tastings and we’ve always had to pay for each pour etc. We didn’t have to do that here at all.
Auntie and I each had a red wine while my family was tasting white wine. Though I noticed that Auntie preferred the lighter reds and I wanted a yummy dry red wine. So we definitely had our differences.
I really enjoyed the wine that I tried and would have taken some home, but I wanted to bring something my whole family would enjoy when we get home. It better be something worth bringing home on a long flight.
So I continued to try a few white wines with my family to see what they are enjoying and what we can possible bring home.
We ended up taking a couple bottles of wine home. The Sparkling Matilda was our family favorite as a very easy to drink with very light sweet flavor sparkling wine.
These bottles flew home with me wrapped in several layers of bubble wrap, placed in a plastic bag, cushioned with some clothes and then placed in one of my small net laundry bags. I’m sure their is an easier way, but I was a little paranoid.
After some wine tasting we walked around the winery. Instead of seeing rows and rows of grape vines, we walked into a statue garden.
Lots of interesting, unique, and rather artsy stuff. Can hear just imagine the music she in playing with her cello?
I thought these were rather lonely looking pieces. You cant’ really tell, but in perspective there is a little guy standing in the circle and he probably got up there with that latter. Haha, I’m a giant.
As we continued into the garden beyond the main statues, we wandered into a camillia garden and then a little ‘secret garden area’.
Just follow the little signs. Along the way, i snapped a few shots of more floweres.
We tried to be artsy too with lots of selfies. haha.
Scarborough Wine Co.
Our next winery was just next door at Scarborough Wine Co. I was told at the info center that you can see some amazing views of Hunter Valley. And it sure was breath taking when we arrived.
179 Gillards Rd,
Pokolbin NSW 2320 Australia
Scarborough is another rather small family owned winery and well known for their chardonnay. They also have another tasting room nearby with a much more modern feel on Hermitage Road. But for us, we didn’t drive far.
The tasting room was once again a small building with a few tables and a bar area. And when we arrived, the place was so quite. We were the only ones their, so we decided to sit inside this time.
Our wine tasting came with a cheese platter, which was a perfect snack for us. As we studied the wine options.
Unlike Constable Vineyard (who simply gave a glass and a menu), were were given a placemat with wine listed, a few glasses on top of each circle, and a little wine list with descriptions.
We were really looking for a wine that is lighter and on the sweeter side and unfortunatley Scarborough didn’t have what we were looking for. I was actually a little uncomfortable leaving without buying anything after enjoying their cheese platter, but I guess I should have checked at the info center for the type of wine we wanted to try as well (info dude asked me that, but I didn’t really pay attention).
Although the wine wasn’t for us, the views, the flowers, and the cheese platter made this stop worth it.
We stayed outside for a little longer before leaving to take in the beautiful views of the grape vines and beyond. It was such a beautiful day to be outside. We didn’t go to any other wineries after this though. Instead we headed south to The Entrance for lunch and to watch other having lunch…