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McGuigan Wines LEADING the world


Wine Reviews

What’s On

De Iuliis wines is one of the Hunter Valley’s top producers. The secret to our success is our attention to detail and small batch approach, which has seen a vast array of awards and great reviews bestowed on us over the last few years.

Regionality and a modern approach to winemaking ensure unique yet highly identifiable wines with a sense of time and place. One of the hardest names to say in the Australian wine industry, but also one of the best!

1616 BROke ROAD, POkOlBIn nSW 2320 P 02 4993 8000 E SAleS@DeWIne.cOm.Au DeWIne.cOm.Au

keeping it simple

Taste @ The Small Winemakers Centre & Hunter Resort W T/F 02 6574 7371 E

behind every taste there’s a tale…

Discover over 150 years of winemaking experience with a trip to Tyrrell’s Hunter Valley winery. We are proud to share our rich heritage by taking you on a journey beyond the Cellar Door – explore our red and white winemaking facilities and see first hand the old oak vats and historic red cellar, still in full operation. Visit the original iron bark hut built by Edward Tyrrell and then let our Cellar Door team guide you through as tasting of our award winning wines including: • Vat 1 Semillon - Australia’s most awarded white wine. • Vat 9 Shiraz - our flagship shiraz and rated 97 Points in the 2012 James Halliday Australian Wine Companion. • Johnno’s Semillon and Shiraz – sourced from vines over 100 years old. • Single Vineyard semillons, chardonnays and shiraz – all scoring over 93 Points in the 2012 James Halliday Australian Wine Companion VISIT US: 1838 Broke Road, Pokolbin NSW 2320 CONTACT US: Ph: (02) 4993 7000 Email: TyrrellsWines

CELLAR DOOR: Monday to Saturday, 9am - 5pm & Sunday, 10am - 4pm Winery tour daily 10.30am, cost $5 per person, no bookings required Private group tour & tastings available


issue 35 SUMMER 2012/13



10 Every Issue

5 7 25 35 44 50

President’s Note News Meet the Locals Extra, Extra What’s On Out & About


10 14 18 22 28 29


McGuigan Wines; World Leaders Contracting the Best Wine Profile: Hungerford Hill Cellar Door Tulloch Wines Pokolbin Dry Red Labels From the Cellar Wine Reviews


36 The Fruits of Summer COVER PHOTOGRAPH of Neil McGuigan BY CHRIS ELFES. STORY ON PAGE 10. Photographs by Chris Elfes appearing in BREATHE may be purchased by contacting Chris Elfes, Photography on Hermitage.



40 Art: Sculpture in the Vines

BREATHE Publisher Hunter Valley Wine Industry Association


Melinda Kelly P 02 4991 4533 E

graphic design Sally Sneddon Graphic Design P 02 4934 4781 E


Chris Elfes Photography P 0413 805 222 E

SUB-EDITOR Lauren Kennedy E ADVERTISING ENQUIRIES Melinda Kelly P 02 4991 4533


Rick Allen, Andrew Graham, Melinda Kelly, Virginia Mitchell, Grant Radford, Rhiannon Stevens.


Finsbury Green P 02 9662 2600

Publisher DETAILS Hunter Valley Wine Industry Association

P 02 4991 4533 E ABN 15 728 023 119 All correspondence to: PO BOX 352, Cessnock. 2325

© COPYRIGHT This publication may not, in whole or part be reproduced, translated, copied, photocopied to any form without the express written permission of the publisher. While every care is taken in compiling the contents of this publication, the publisher assumes no responsibility for the effects arising there from. The information and figures contained in this publication have been provided to the publishers by the advertisers and their sources. No warranty is given by Breathe Hunter Style Magazine as to the accuracy of these figures and information as they are subject to change without notice. The responsibility or copyright on all supplied material rests with the supplier.

president’s note


s it just me, or did 2012 simply fly by? In what has been an incredibly busy year in the Hunter Valley, we have faced some tough times, but fortunately the successes have been great.

Congratulations to the many wine companies who have continued to prove the quality of premium Hunter Valley Wines, winning trophies and awards, receiving fantastic reviews, and taking their wines to some new and enthusiastic markets.

We are excited and suitably proud that the Hunter Valley can lay claim to the 2012 International Winemaker of the Year, 2012 Australian Producer of the Year, as well as producing the 2012 International Semillon Trophy winner, and the 2012 New South Wales Wine of the Year. Turn to the News pages (7, 8 and 9) to read about these and other outstanding results. Strangely enough, award-winning wines don’t just make themselves. On page 10, Rick Allen catches up with Neil McGuigan, who was fresh off the plane from London after being named International Winemaker of the Year at the 2012 International Wine & Spirit Competition. If you are thinking of trying your hand at producing your own wine label, then turn to page 14. Andrew Graham points you in the right direction, should you need assistance in making and bottling your own wine. The Hunter Valley has an amazing history, and one which is vital to preserve. In this issue, Rhiannon Stevens takes a look at the Tulloch Pokolbin Dry Red Label (recipient of the 2012 Hunter Valley Wine Industry Heritage Award), and why it is so important to the history of the Hunter Valley. We understand that not everyone can make it to the Hunter Valley, so on the first Sunday of each November, we take the Hunter Valley to beautiful Balmoral Beach in Sydney. Photographer Ken Martin captured this year’s event and we share it with you on pages 48 and 49. We would love to see you there for next year’s event on Sunday 3 November 2013. Of course, in this issue are the regular features, like Meet the Locals, art, wine reviews, the food feature, What’s On, and much more. Take it easy over the holiday period. Relax and enjoy your summer edition of Hunter Valley Breathe Magazine.

Andrew Margan, President

Hunter Valley Wine Industry Association

This summer CelebraTe in sTyle wiTh... new release Pewter sparkling Pinot Chardonnay new release Copper moscato Cellar Door exclusive moscato rosa

see you any day of the week between 10am to 5pm (Closed Christmas Day) P: 02 4993 3999 e: w:

LOCAL CHEFS TAKE ON THE WORLD Two local Hunter Valley apprentice chefs are set to take on the world, after winning recent cooking competitions. Thomas Boyd of Margan Restaurant has been named National Apprentice of the Year at the Australian Culinary Federation’s 2012 Australian National Apprentice Competition. Thomas also won the Best Dessert and 3rd and 4th Year Apprentice Categories. The national awards were staged in Brisbane, with the original pool of 3,000 chefs whittled down to final teams representing each state. Thomas now goes on to represent Australia, competing in Europe in 2013. Meanwhile, Joshua Gregory of Muse Restaurant & Café has won the Hunter Institute of TAFE and Hunter Chefs & Co 2012 Brett Graham Award. He went head-to-head with other finalists, Rhys Connell of Bacchus and Thomas Boyd, in a three-course cook-off to win the award. For his efforts, Josh will follow in his boss’s footsteps (Troy Rhoades-Brown is a former scholarship winner) to undertake a two week sabbatical at The Ledbury restaurant in London, owned by former local Hunter Valley chef, Brett Graham. Ranked 14th in the world, The Ledbury and the Brett Graham scholarship continue to offer invaluable experience to some of the Hunter Valley’s most promising young chefs. PICTURED Thomas Boyd

Diary Dates Hunter Valley Legends & Wine Industry Awards Thursday 23 May 2013 Hunter Valley Wine & Food Month Month of June 2013 2013 Hunter Valley Wine Show Celebrations Luncheon Friday 16 August 2013


Keep up-to-date on what’s been happening in the Hunter Valley

Hunter Valley Uncorked Balmoral Sunday 3 November 2013

TOWER ESTATE NAMED WORLD’S LUXURY LODGE Tower Lodge has taken top honours at the 2012 World Luxury Hotel Awards, winning Global Luxury Lodge for the second year running. The World Luxury Hotel Awards are seen as the pinnacle of achievement for luxury hotels worldwide, setting the benchmark for service excellence for luxury on a global scale According to Managing Director of Tower Estate, Matt Cowley, this win has cemented Tower Lodge as the ultimate Australian country experience. “We are honoured to have received this accolade for the second time. This business is entering an exciting new phase in its history, with a new team of hospitality professionals and a host of plans to enhance the property,” he said. BREATHE summer 2012/13


NEWS HUNGERFORD HILL WINS NSW WINE OF THE YEAR A Hunter Valley wine company has claimed the Citibank New South Wales Awards title of New South Wales Wine of the Year for the fifth year running. Hungerford Hill Wines has taken out the prestigious award for 2012 with their 2007 Epic Shiraz. The wine also won Best Mature Dry Red. “The win confirms the fact that the Hunter Valley is making great wines across the board, from producers new and old, large and small,” said Andrew Margan, President, Hunter Valley Wine Industry Association. Last year, Mistletoe Wines won New South Wales Wine of the Year; in 2010, it was Tempus Two; in 2009, Brokenwood Wines; and in 2008, Audrey Wilkinson Vineyard took out the top trophy. At this year’s event, Audrey Wilkinson Vineyard won two trophies: the Best Young Semillon for its 2012 The Ridge Semillon, and Best Mature Dry White for the 2006 Museum Reserve Semillon, which won Wine of the Year in 2008. Congratulations also to Tallavera Grove for taking out Best Young Shiraz with its Tallavera Grove 2011 Shiraz, and Ascella Wines for winning the Organic Wine trophy with its 2011 Premium Chardonnay.

PICTURED TOP TO BOTTOM NSW Wine of the Year presented to James Kirby by Citibank CEO, Roy Gori; Best Young Semillon awarded to Jeff Byrne by NSW Dept of Primary Industry General Agriculture NSW Deputy Director, Michael Bullen; Best Mature Dry Red presented to James Kirby by David Murphy; Best Mature Dry White awarded to James Agnew by NSW Wines President, David Lowe; Best Young Shiraz awarded to Tim Davis by AMCOR Stelvin Key Account Manager Jason Thomas


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Hunter Valley wines dominated the 2012 Citibank New South Wales Wine Awards’ Top 40, with 22 wines from the following companies making the list: Ascella Wines, Audrey Wilkinson Vineyard, Brokenwood Wines, De Iuliis Wines, FIRSt Creek Wines, Gartelmann WINES, Hungerford Hill Wines, Leogate Estate, McLeish Estate, Meerea Park, Pepper Tree Wines, Pokolbin Estate, Tallavera Grove, Thomas Wines, Tulloch Wines and Tyrrell’s Vineyards.

MORE SUCCESS FOR SEMILLONS Hunter Valley Semillons continue their success story with several major trophy wins on the 2012 wine show circuit. At the 2012 Royal Melbourne Wine Show, McWilliam’s Mount Pleasant 2009 Lovedale Semillon took out Best Semillon and Best Aged Semillon, and Audrey Wilkinson Vineyard 2006 Museum Release Semillon won Best Mature Wine. Tyrrell’s Vineyards 2005 Vat 1 Semillon was awarded Best Semillon of Show at the 2012 Royal Adelaide Wine Show, while at the 2012 Royal Perth Wine Show, Tempus Two 2007 Copper Zenith Semillon won Best Semillon, and McWilliam’s Mount Pleasant 2006 Cellar Door Release Elizabeth Semillon was named Best Dry White Varietal. Meanwhile, Jackson’s Hill Vineyard 2005 Semillon won Best White Wine of Show at the 2012 Hunter Valley Boutique Winemakers Show.

NEWS McGUIGAN CROWNED WORLD’S BEST WINEMAKER The Hunter Valley’s McGuigan Wines has claimed the title of ‘world’s best winemaker’ for the third time in four years at the prestigious International Wine & Spirit Competition. Having already won the award in 2009 and 2011, McGuigan Wines was awarded the title of 2012 International Winemaker of The Year, at the event which is held annually in London and attracts entries from over 80 countries. In the 43-year history of the competition, no winery, whether from the Old World or New World, has ever been awarded the International Winemaker of the Year three times. McGuigan Wines was also named International Wine & Spirit Competition 2012 Australian Producer of the Year, again for the third time, and won Best White Winemaker at the International Wine Challenge in 2009 and 2012. Congratulations also to Ernest Hill Wines, McWilliam’s Mount Pleasant, Keith Tulloch Wines and Wyndham Estate, who also won gold, silver and bronze medals at the International Wine & Spirit Competition, and proudly represented the Hunter Valley and Australia.

PICTURED Murray Flannigan

MURRAY RETIRES AFTER 45 YEARS After a staggering 45 years working for Tyrrell’s Vineyards, Murray Flannigan has poured his last Cellar Door tasting and is now settling into retirement. Murray started his career with Tyrrell’s on the bottling line, but, according to Bruce Tyrrell, with his amazing people skills, he soon found his way to Cellar Door and became the face of Tyrrell’s. The public highlight of his career was receiving the Graham Gregory Award for Service to the New South Wales wine industry. “Murray has probably introduced more people to drinking wine than anyone else in the history of New South Wales, so it was certainly well deserved,” said Bruce Tyrrell.

PICTURED Neil McGuigan and Brian McGuigan

“From all of us at TyRrell’s, there are no words that can express the depth of our thanks to Murray. In these days of disposable lifestyles and careers, 45 years in one place is an absolute rarity, and we are honoured to have been graced with his presence and contributions throughout his long career.”

Keeping up with the

Hunter Valley

We’d love you to join us. Our winemakers and local wine families will be tweeting and updating on a regular basis.

BREATHE summer 2012/13



We’ve come a long way from our humble beginnings in the Hunter Valley. 10

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McGuigan Wines



The numbers do the talking, and how deliciously eloquent they are: 39 wines entered, 39 medals received - eight gold, 22 silver and nine bronze, including eight best-in-class awards. Let’s continue: McGuigan Wines named Australian Producer of the Year, and its Chief Winemaker, Neil McGuigan, named both International White Winemaker of the Year, and International Winemaker of the Year for the (unprecedented) third time in four years. And no, this is not some nondescript domestic competition we’re talking about, but one of the big three wine shows of the world - the prestigious 2012 International Wine and Spirits Competition in London, which attracted entries from 80 countries. In its 43-year history, no winemaker had ever won the title three times before. Even by McGuigan Wines’ lofty standards booming international sales, nine million cases produced annually, 10 per cent of Australia’s total crush, and a hat-trick of International Winemaker of the Year awards (previously won in 2009 and 2011) - it’s an incredible achievement. “To have won International Winemaker of the Year for the third time in four years is an outstanding result for Australia and the McGuigan brand,” Neil McGuigan said, on accepting the award. “We’ve come a long way from our humble beginnings in the Hunter Valley. To be the only winery in the world

to have won ‘world’s best winemaker’ three times is testament to our commitment to quality. We can now proudly say that we are one of the most awarded wineries in the world.” Probably the sweetest aspect to it all is that, pitted against some of the world’s most expensive wines, the backbone of the company’s success was the humble Bin 9000 Semillon, which sold as a young wine for the princely sum of $12 per bottle. The 2004 vintage won the International Semillon Trophy, whilst the 1997 and 2011 won ‘best in class’, and the 2003 and 2005 vintages also collected gold. It is hard to imagine a better way of putting Hunter Semillon on the world stage. As the man who is ultimately responsible for McGuigan Wines, what is the secret? The first thing one discovers about Neil McGuigan is that he is a driven soul, always setting the bar higher, challenging the company’s 18 winemakers. “One of the first things I did when I rejoined the company in 2004 was to tell them I wanted us to make a $100 red,” he explained, trying to pinpoint his philosophy.

BREATHE summer 2012/13



Our winemakers have to get out there and scream and yell and tell the world how good our wines are. “I felt, with all the treatment we give our wines in the winery - top-of-the-range presses, refrigerated fermentation, cross-flow filtration, beautiful oak, and so on - it ain’t hard to make a $100 red. So, you become lazy. “We needed discipline and desire. So by aiming higher making a $100 wine that can compete with the best reds in the country - we believe that will flow down through our entire range, so our $10 red will taste like a $14 red, and so on.” The goal comes to fruition next year, when a $100 Clare Valley Shiraz Cabernet called, appropriately enough, The Philosophy, hits the shelves. “I believe that, even at that price, it over-delivers, and can go head-to-head with Australia’s best. And when that’s out, I’ve told my guys we’re going to bring out a $200 bottle.” While the McGuigan Wines juggernaut has access to some outstanding fruit from across the country, Neil McGuigan’s loyalty lies fiercely with the Hunter Valley. Are Hunter Valley wines are as good as ever? “Yes, but it has come at a price,” he said. “We’ve had to drop our overall volume to consistently get the quality of fruit we’re after, and that means there’s less Hunter Valley wine out there on the shelves. “Our winemakers have to get out there and scream and yell and tell the world how good our wines are. They have to educate people - and I don’t think we’re doing it anywhere near enough. You see Chester Osborn of d’Arenberg out there with his brightly coloured outfits and wild hair promoting McLaren Vale, and that’s good he’s a character, and we need that. 12

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I’m away or overseas three weeks out of four, doing just this: masterclasses, stores, winemakers’ dinners, whatever. This year, I’ve been to the UK three or four times, Europe, Scandinavia, Asia… but the other week I was also in stores at Lakemba and Rooty Hill, keeping the flag flying.” It’s quite obvious that the need to educate the public is a subject dear to his heart. “Look, when the wine world was after big wines, McGuigan stuck by our guns and went for power and lightness,” he said. “That’s the key, and it’s what the Hunter Valley does best. It means we won’t win shows with our young Shiraz, because as hard as judges try, the bigger, more obvious wines will stand out. But over time, our reds will really shine. “It’s ironic. We make a European style, which means our Shiraz is far more highly regarded internationally than it is domestically. So we have to get out there and tell the public why it’s so good.” PICTURED Neil McGuigan

wine school

Take a sensory journey around the world, all without leaving the Hunter Valley. The World in a Glass Wine School is an enjoyable, two-and-a-half hour wine workshop pitting the key Hunter Valley varietals against their counterparts from other major wine regions in Australia and France. Bookings: 02 4998 2992 or 600 McDonalds Road, Pokolbin.

Every Saturday and Sunday 10:30am-1:00pm FiRSt CREEk WinES • PokolBin • HuntER VAllEy

Heritage Vineyard Shiraz and Semillon Tasting Visit McWilliam’s Mount Pleasant and taste some of our most iconic wines from original vineyards. They are impeccable expressions of their unique terroir, having established themselves amongst the most revered and acclaimed wines in the Hunter Valley. The Heritage Vineyard Shiraz and Semillon Tasting is available throughout the Summer months in a private tasting room for $25 per person (minimum 2 people) and redeemable on purchases over $250.

Wines to taste include a vertical tasting of 2003, 2005 and 2007 Lovedale Semillon. All three were great vintages and are fine examples of single vineyard Semillon. We will also be looking at the current release High Paddock Shiraz, the Rosehill Shiraz, the Mount Henry Shiraz Pinot Noir and the Old Paddock and Old Hill Shiraz. Bookings are essential. Phone Mount Pleasant Cellar Door on 4998 7505 or email




icture this: you have retired to the Hunter Valley and found the property of your dreams. The driveway is long; the view of the Brokenback Ranges stunning. It is perfect.

Better still, the property has its own vineyard, complete with old Shiraz and Semillon vines, heavy with ripening grapes. Immediately, your thoughts run to your own wine label, to that Hunter Shiraz you have always wanted to make (and all the wine show medals you are going to win). There is only one problem - whilst you have grapes, there is no winery on the property. Nor, for that matter, do you have any idea how to make great wine. (You can drink it though ‌)

One of the best-known businesses offering these services is First Creek Wines, acknowledged as one of the largest (and most successful) contract winemaking businesses in the country. Headed up by Greg Silkman, alongside 2011 Hunter Valley Winemaker of the Year Liz Jackson, First Creek offers winemaking services to 25 different labels and also bottles wine for over 100 different wine businesses, including such well-known operations as Tulloch, Ivanhoe, Gartelmann and Krinklewood.

So, what do you do? You can’t just leave those grapes for the birds, the grapes wasted until you learn how to make wine and build a winery...

More than just winemakers, First Creek Wines also operates one of the biggest temperature-controlled storage facilities in the Hunter - another important aspect often forgotten when it comes to wine production (that new Hunter Valley homestead - do you think it has enough room in the laundry to store three pallets of wine?!).

The answer is quite simple: call in the contract winemakers. A contract winemaker, by nature, makes wine for other people, whether they are individual grape-growers or large-scale vineyards and wineries. In the Hunter Valley, there is a whole network of talented wine professionals geared up for just such a situation. Better still, they are able to not only turn your grapes into wine, but also bottle, label and help market it (in case you don’t want to keep it all for yourself).

Naturally, contract winemaking is not your only option. Indeed, you can always attempt to make the wine yourself (does the homestead have a garage that could be used as a winery?).

... you have retired to the Hunter Valley and found the property of your dreams. The driveway is long; the view of the Brokenback Ranges stunning. It is perfect... call in the contract winemakers.


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the Best


Putting the lack of winemaking knowledge to one side, perhaps the biggest challenge of making wine ‘in that back shed’ is purely the equipment required. Crushers, de-stemmers, refrigeration plants, filters, barrels and the like are all expensive. Expensive equipment ($200,000$300,000 for a small-scale winery) that uses a lot of electricity and is largely only used for a few months of the year may be genuinely hard to justify to the bank manager.

The benefit of having someone like Nick making your wines is that he brings with him 19 years of winemaking experience, nine of which were spent making small-batch Hunter Valley wines and consulting for vignerons like Mistletoe Wines, Writers Block Wines and Echo Hill.

Besides the cost, there is also the question of manhours and space. Many contract winemaking clients are pastoralists to whom grape-growing is just a part of their business (so they don’t have the resources for wine production). For others, it is simply about the lack of available space for a winery, or even for established winemakers who need extra storage or processing. Ultimately, it is the flexible, cost-effective options that contract facilities offer that are perhaps the most attractive thing about them.

Ken Sloan, founder of Mistletoe Wines, credits much of the winery’s recent success to the talents of Nick, admitting that his own backyard winemaking skills are hardly comparable to that of a professional.

More than just cost-effective to produce, the resultant wines can also be among the best in the Hunter Valley, with several Hunter Valley winemakers known as contract ‘guns for hire’. Look only to Nick Paterson of Dogliani Winemaking & Consulting as a perfect example of the talent available. Not only is Nick the 2012 Hunter Valley Winemaker of the Year, but he also crafted the 2011 NSW Wine of the Year, the Mistletoe Wines Reserve Chardonnay.

Along a similar line of winemaking talent is Andrew Thomas of Thomas Wines, who not only produces Semillon and Shiraz under his own revered label, but also produces wines for the likes of Hunter Valley producers McLeish Estate and Pokolbin Estate. In fact, in this year’s Citibank NSW Wine Awards, ‘Thommo’ had produced no fewer than six of the wines in the Top 40, both under his own label and for winemaking clients.

PICTURED FROM LEFT Russell Smith, Nick Paterson, Damien Stevens, Shaun Silkman, Jeff Byrne and Andrew Thomas.

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Great fruit ultimately means great wines.

Thommo credits this success mainly with a very close relationship with the growers of the grapes themselves, a relationship that allows both parties to end up with a finished product that they are happy with. “Great fruit ultimately means great wines,” he says. “With really great fruit, my job is more about fine tuning and helping the fruit express itself.” Another successful contract winemaker and big winner at the 2012 Citibank NSW Wine Awards was Audrey Wilkinson, who picked up two trophies for Best Mature Dry White and Best Young Semillon. Audrey Wilkinson is owned by the Agnew family through their Agnew Wines operation, a business which purchased the Pooles Rock and Cockfighters Ghost wine brands off the estate of former Macquarie Bank Chairman - and passionate Hunter Valley wine identity David Clarke in 2011. It is the Agnew Wines winery that makes it so ideal for contract winemaking, with the 3,000-tonne capacity facility built to handle both small, hands-on winemaking style batches of grapes as well as much larger batches. It is little wonder that Agnew Wines handles contract winemaking for some 15 wine brands. Couple this with the likes of ALLANDale WineRY, which also provides contract winemaking on both a small and medium scale, and you’ve got a quite comprehensive set of options for what can be done with that crop of Shiraz and Semillon. Ultimately, the only challenge in employing a contract winemaker is that you do lose some of the hands-on joy that comes from winemaking. The smell of fermenting Shiraz grapes, for one, is one of the most delicious things imaginable, akin to having your own spicy jam factory 16

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that rolls on for a week or more, as the grapes ferment. Whilst most contract winemakers allow for input into the process so you can feel a part of the action, there is nothing that can match the feel of wine skins between your toes as you do your own foot–treading, a la Lucille Ball. If you do decide that DIY is the only way, there are options to help facilitate that, too. The Hunter Valley Bottling Company is perhaps the best-known bottling and labelling company in the region, with equipment to bottle and package wines for small and large producers. Even the more renowned, mediumsized makers tend to outsource their bottling to outfits like Hunter Valley bottlers, particularly given how expensive a good-quality bottling line can be to install ($1 million per line is typical), and how much more efficient the newer equipment can be. With decisions like this taken care of by the skilled hands of contract winemakers, bottlers and consultants, you are left with the more important decisions - like what sort of food will match best with your award-winning Shiraz!

PICTURED Liz Jackson

Recreating History Bring back the tradition that made the Hunter Valley famous





BREATHE summer 2012/13

Having fun is a very important component; it creates an environment in which people can learn about wine (if need be) and also enjoy themselves.


t has been an exceptional year for Hungerford Hill WINES. In fact, it has been an epic year, with their 2007 Hungerford Hill Epic Shiraz recently awarded the 2012 New South Wales Wine of the Year at the Citibank New South Wales Wine Awards. Add to that the wine also taking out Best Mature Dry Red at the same awards, and their Cellar Door team named 2012 Hunter Valley Cellar Door of the Year at the Hunter Valley Legends & Wine Industry Awards, and we can see why there has been some serious ‘toasting’ going on at Hungerford Hill WINES. Established in 1967, Hungerford Hill has long been an icon of the Hunter Valley. It is owned and operated by the Kirby family, under the guidance of James Kirby. “We are thrilled to have received these latest awards, including 2012 New South Wales Wine of the Year,” said James Kirby. “It’s a testament to the hard work, talent and dedication of our winemakers, and the entire Hungerford Hill team.” Melinda Kelly recently dropped in for a quick tasting and a chat with their Cellar Door Supervisor, Sean Parkinson.

PICTURED ABOVE Hungerford Hill Cellar Door and Muse Restaurant and Café PICTURED OPPOSITE PAGE Hungerford Hill’s winning team

Hungerford Hill Wines was named Cellar Door of the Year at the 2012 Hunter Valley Legends & Wine Industry Awards and, more recently, was awarded 2012 New South Wales Wine of the Year. How was that? We are all over the moon with the New South Wales Wine of the Year win. Getting this recognition has meant a lot to us all: the winemakers, viticulturists, Cellar Door team, club team, and of course management. It’s also great to see the Hunter Valley take out the top gong again this year.

It was fantastic to be awarded Cellar Door of the Year and to know the staff’s hard work has been recognised and rewarded! All of our staff members are very passionate about our wine, the region and making sure our guests have a positive and memorable experience when they visit our Cellar Door. What is it that makes Hungerford Hill ‘Cellar Door of the Year 2012’? I think it is a combination of a few things. Our staff members are very knowledgeable about our wine and the region, and are very friendly, which creates an atmosphere where our guests can relax and enjoy our wine. We are also passionate about food, so when talking about wine, it helps our guests to relate and better understand wine and the experiences it can give. (Having Muse Restaurant and Café next door certainly does help!) Having fun is a very important component; it creates an environment in which people can learn about wine (if need be) and also enjoy themselves. What do you think are the secrets behind operating a successful Cellar Door? Making sure the Cellar Door is very appealing in appearance (not sterile) and running professionally. When our guests come in, we want them to feel welcomed in a professional but friendly manner. We ensure all of our individual Cellar Door staff members know they are a significant part of the Hungerford Hill team and make sure they enjoy their time at work. Getting the best out of every team member is very rewarding.

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Some people are a little uncertain of how to go about tasting wine at a Cellar Door. What are your top tips for wine tasting? Firstly, be relaxed. There are no rules - everyone’s tastes are different and the Cellar Door staff certainly won’t make a fuss if you can’t spit like a wine judge and dribble over the counter! When you’re relaxed, you will tend to engage more with the staff and the wine you taste. Secondly, wine is objective, so be open to tasting different styles. Be adventurous and try some styles you don’t usually drink. You’ll find you will assess the wine more to your taste, than just listening to someone else’s opinion or reading the back of the label. Relating wine back to food (complement/contrast) is also a good tip: it gets you excited about wine and helps you better relate. What is your favourite Hungerford Hill wine on offer over summer?

PICTURED Hungerford Hill Staff collect their award for Cellar Door of the Year at the 2012 Hunter Valley Legends Awards


My favourite wine over summer would be our 2010 Hunter Valley Semillon. With an abundance of seafood to choose from, the Hunter Valley Semillon is fresh, vibrant and matches all types of seafood very well. It’s a great wine to drink now, or to age for up to another eight years.

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What is so special about working in the Hunter Valley and producing Hunter Valley wines? The natural beauty of the Hunter Valley with its diverse seasons is quite breathtaking. Driving to work through the countryside gives you a sense of belonging to nature. You feel quite privileged to work with other like-minded people who are passionate about the Hunter Valley and showcasing the region. The Hunter Valley wine styles are quite unique in the way that they are quite delicate and age in the bottle gracefully. You’ve got a very strong and loyal wine club. What is your most memorable wine club event? We’ve been very fortunate to have several fantastic wine club events over the years. The most memorable so far, this year, was probably our Manly Pavilion Luncheon in Sydney. Everything just came together spectacularly: the weather, the food and the wine! Over 70 of our wonderful club members and guests enjoyed beautiful sunshine on the deck, while sipping our sensational 2008 Sparkling Dalliance, accompanied by some delicious Sydney Rock oysters. We followed with an extraordinary three-course lunch, perfectly matched to a selection of Hungerford Hill wines. It was a hard day to endure! The Hunter Valley attracts its share of celebrities and sporting identities. Who has been to Hungerford Hill lately? Kate Ceberano has been known to fly in via helicopter, and Kevin McCloud (from Grand Designs) recently had lunch here and did some wine tasting. He loved our wines, and particularly loved the architecture of the building. The Newcastle Jets have also been in for lunch, much to the delight of the Hungerford Hill female work colleagues. We are also proud to have a club member, Malcolm Page, who is an Olympic Champion (Sailing Men’s 470).



Rhiannon Stevens explores the significance of the Pokolbin Dry Red labels to the heritage of the Hunter Valley.


ach year, prominent figures and landmarks of historical importance within the Hunter Valley wine industry are honoured at the Hunter Valley Legends and Wine Industry Awards. The Heritage Award recognises long-standing distinction and significant contribution to the Hunter Valley wine industry, and is selected by the Living Legends. Following the commemoration of the Maurice O’Shea labels in 2011, the 2012 Heritage Award pays tribute to Tulloch Wines Pokolbin Dry Red labels. The Tulloch family’s incredible entry into the wine industry came about by accident in 1895 with John Younie Tulloch - a successful businessman with interests in grazing, farming, and the Branxton General Store. 22

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After reconciling a debt with J. Hungerford, John Younie received 43 acres at Pokolbin, some of which was under vine. With fervour, he rehabilitated the unattended Shiraz plantings at ‘Glen Elgin’ and managed to produce his first vintage within a year. John Younie’s pre-eminent enthusiasm and vigour assisted Tulloch Wines in becoming the largest producers in the Hunter Valley by the 1920s, and pioneers of the Hunter Valley wine industry. Second generation Tulloch, Hector John, first released the iconic Pokolbin Dry Red and Pokolbin Dry Red Private Bin labels for Shiraz in 1952. The decision followed decades of selling their wines mainly in bulk to other prominent wine companies of the time - Hardys, Mildara, Penfolds, Lindeman’s - and even to Maurice O’Shea.

The motif is representative of the scouts returning from the promised land, bearing between them a bunch of grapes, as referred to in the bible.

Changing Australian palates and consumer perceptions of table wines drove Hector Tulloch to establish his own label. The Pokolbin Dry Red labels depict two grape pickers carting a bunch of grapes, and are still used today and represent the status forged by the Tulloch brand. “The motif is representative of the scouts returning from the promised land, bearing between them a bunch of grapes, as referred to in the bible,” said Jay Tulloch. “To the family, it symbolises our heritage and commitment to Hunter Valley wines.” Among their now-extensive range of varietals, Tulloch has a proud tradition of producing medium-bodied reds sporting the conservative finesse, complexity and charm that is renowned in the Hunter Valley’s regional terroir.

The Pokolbin Dry Red Private Bin style is individually refined, whilst substantively true of the Hunter region. The famed 1954 vintage Pokolbin Dry Red Private Bin won first prizes for both Claret and Burgundy, but also Best Red Wine of the Royal Sydney Show in 1956. The late Len Evans recalled in 2006, “At the end of the ‘60s, Grange was the same price as Tulloch’s Private Bin,” setting the benchmark for prestigious Australian wine.

PICTURED Jay Tulloch and his daughter, fourth generation, Christina

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WINE HERITAGE Today, the labels persist as a reminder of the esteem generated by early Pokolbin Dry Red wines of the 1950s and ‘60s, which assisted in raising the profile of the Hunter Valley. The success of the labels can be attributed to both the consistent quality of the wines and their commercial availability in the marketplace. Successful early distribution in the 1950s and 1960s placed the Pokolbin Dry Red on every major Sydney wine list and on the lips of the consumer. There is market appeal for traditional labels, as we seek consistency in quality and the familiar. Sometimes, we are attracted to the hype of an iconic brand or to reliving nostalgia through a wine. The subjectivity of wine means it evokes emotional connections through the flavour, the aroma, the narrative, what we ate, who we shared it with, or even the label. The acknowledgment of the Pokolbin Dry Red labels through the Heritage Award highlights the value of printed works to both place-making and personal interpretation of our wine experiences.

Sandstone cairns are erected to mark Heritage Award recipients, sponsored by Fay and Brian McGuigan. The cairn unveiling will take place in 2013. Brian McGuigan stated that “the cairn project is designed to recognise the people, places or objects that have nurtured and been crucial to the development and stature of the district.” Today, the Tulloch tradition lives on under the auspices of its third generation, Jay, who confirmed “the old Pokolbin Dry Red labels were a big part of bringing the Tulloch name to fame.” The family’s fourth generation continues to preserve the Tulloch legacy, with Christina and Jock managing operations in the company. The Pokolbin Dry Red labels have contributed to the ongoing success of the Tulloch company and are an unrelenting icon of the Hunter Valley. For more from Rhiannon Stevens, head to

At the end of the ‘60s, Grange was the same price as Tulloch’s Private Bin.


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VIGNERON, ERNEST HILL WINES Born and bred in the St George area of Sydney, Ross has spent most of his working life as an Information Technologist with a large multinational consumer goods company. He says that, like most people in the wine industry, his interest commenced as a keen wine consumer. For the last 12 years, Ross’s focus has been on Ernest Hill Wines. His son, Jason, is a business partner, while his daughter, Lisa, his daughter-in–law, Vanessa, and his long-suffering partner, Jackie, are all involved in the day-to-day operations. What is the best part of your job? Variety. One day it’s the vineyard, the next the winery, then the Cellar Door - not to mention the office, suppliers, and the accountant. A typical day includes... Writing a ‘To Do List’ in first thing in the morning, What is your most memorable bottle ever tasted? The first wine we produced was a 2002 ‘Cyril’ Semillon. When we opened it two days after bottling, it had a considerable degree of bottle shock. Not the best wine I’ve tasted, but certainly the most memorable.

What do you drink at home? We mainly drink Hunter Valley wines, but we are also enjoying some Bordeaux and Chianti, shipped home from our last European trip. How do you relax after a hard day? I like to cook to wind down, and a glass of wine helps. Jackie doesn’t seem to mind if I take over the kitchen, as she prefers other ways of relaxing! The best visitor is the one who… Appreciates well-made wine, is not pretentious, has a good sense of humour, and purchases some wine. What is your favourite food and wine match? Duck cassoulet with a medium-bodied Hunter Valley Shiraz. Your fantasy dinner party guests would be… Barry Humphries, Elton John, Billy Connolly, Bette Midler, Hillary Clinton, Lenny Henry, and Julia Gillard. I like a good comedian, and I’ve included a couple of politicians to provide the material. What would your last meal and drinks be? Slow-cooked lamb roast with a nicely aged Bordeaux, Merlot, Cabernet Franc. It’s not cool, but I love… A Wednesday matinée show in Sydney. It makes Jackie and I feel good because we are among the younger people there. If you weren’t you, who would you like to be? A cardiac surgeon. I think it would be very gratifying to be able to help people in this way. What is your favourite product on offer at the moment? Our 2010 Reserve Shiraz, which also won top gold in the 2011 Hunter Valley Wine Show. What is your favourite holiday destination (outside the Hunter Valley, of course)? Jackie and I both love France, particularly the country village lifestyle, the fresh produce, the quality of the food and the friendliness of the people. Locally, we enjoy Port Douglas for a relaxing time.




Open 7 days Breakfast 8.30am - 11.00am Lunch 12.00pm - 3.00pm Corner of Broke Road & Wine Country Drive Pokolbin NSW 2320 P 02 4998 7881 E W Restaurant Cuvée is also the perfect venue for weddings, private dinners and corporate functions. For more information, please contact Naomi Pridue E


What is your most memorable bottle ever tasted? It’s hard to choose between the magnificent line-up of Chardonnays tasted at the old lunch table at Lake’s Folly, including the Folly, Giaconda, Mount Mary, Leeuwin Estate Art Series and Pierro. Now, that was a tough day in the office! It was a fantastic experience, and it changed my entire view of wine and the industry.

WINE CLUB & DIRECT SALES MANAGER, BROKENWOOD WINES Carlee Watson has had somewhat of an on-again off-again love affair with the Hunter Valley wine industry. While she started her wine career while still at high school, working at Elizabeth’s Café at McWilliams Mount Pleasant, she then tried her hand at banking, where she says she nearly died of boredom. “I was lucky enough to get a fantastic position at Lake’s Folly, where I worked for five years, then had another crazy urge to try a different industry and found myself at Beltana Mine at Broke, only to learn that my place was definitely among the vines. I started a new and ever-fun and fabulous journey at Brokenwood Wines, where I have been for three and a half years now,” Carlee said.

What do you drink at home? Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, and occasionally water. How do you relax after a hard day? With a nice glass of wine, and that is all. The best visitor is the one who… Brings laughter ... and wine. What is your favourite food and wine match? Fresh scampi with lemon butter jus, and a gorgeously aged Lakes Folly Chardonnay.

What is the best part of your job? The fabulous Brokenwood Cru that I work with every day, our loveable and fun club members, and of course the wine!

Your fantasy dinner party would be… Russell Brand, Jack Nicholson, Marilyn Monroe and Daniel Gibson (who is the funniest weather man ever, on Prime 7).

What is the worst part of your job? The hangovers.

What would your last meal and drinks be? An indulgent seafood platter with all my favourites, and the most expensive bottle of champagne I could lay my hands on.

A typical day includes … Waking up just that little bit too late, which then means racing the clock with my four- and two-year-old girls to attempt to get to work on time. Starting my work day with a long list of tasks to do, chatting to members, laughing with staff, selling some wine, trying some wine, and finishing the day with most of my list unfinished and ready for the next day. Then heading home to my gorgeous girls, enjoying dinner cooked by my talented husband, kids’ bath time, kids’ bed time… and then a glass or five of my latest favourite vino.

It’s not cool, but I love… Daniel Gibson - he’s the funniest weather man ever, on Prime 7. What is your favourite product on offer at the moment? Clarins Beauty Flash Balm – it is supposed to make you look refreshed. I might not look it, but I believe it, if it says so on the packet! What is your favourite holiday destination (outside the Hunter Valley, of course)? It absolutely has to be the Greek Islands. Ahh!

Your invitation to dine at Restaurant Botanica ...

The Hunter Valley’s freshest regional dining experience Dinner reservations Wed to Sun Evenings from 6pm • Private Degustation Lunches available by request Wed to Sun A passionate hospitality team led by owner/operators Mark and Belinda Stapleton Multi award winning wine list • Stunning rural vineyard and mountain views • Relaxed and comfortable dining ambience Abundant kitchen garden with rare and organic heirloom vegetables, fruits and herbs picked daily for our menu

p. 02

6574 7229 a. Located at Spicers Vineyards Estate 555 Hermitage Rd, Pokolbin 2320


WINEMAKER, OAKVALE WINES James Becker has been making wine for Oakvale Wines under the guidance of Hunter Valley Legend, Pat Auld, for two years. He says that, after nearly a decade of working in the Sydney finance sector, he threw it all in to begin a career doing something he really wanted to do, and he couldn’t be happier with the decision. What is the best part of your job? I really enjoy the feeling of making something with my hands for people to enjoy, and working with nature. What is the worst part of your job? The constant cleaning up. While it’s not fun, it is essential that the winery is kept spic and span. A typical day includes… A bit of everything, and not enough time. What is your most memorable bottle ever tasted? One experience that really inspired me and opened up my eyes to the possibilities of wine was a run of LaFollette Pinot Noirs from several different single vineyards over several years; the vineyard and year can have such expression in wine, if you let it. What are you drinking at home? Our recently released 2012 Oakvale Chardonnay. How do you relax after a hard day? I love to go for a walk with my beautiful wife, our daughter and our dog, then settle in for a great home-cooked dinner with a bottle of Hunter Valley wine. What was your most embarrassing moment? There have been too many to list one as the ‘most’! What is your favourite food and wine match? Wild barramundi with chips and salad, paired with any great Chardonnay.

at Tower Estate Take the time to wine and dine at Roberts – the Hunter Valley’s most celebrated restaurant. Executive Chef George Francisco takes diners on a culinary journey of contemporary Australian cuisine with an emphasis on exceptional produce and second to none service. Complement your meal with a premium selection of Australian and imported wines from our cellar - one of the best in the Hunter Valley. Indulge your senses with world class food and wine in the exquisite grounds of Tower Estate. Halls Road, Pokolbin. Bookings are essential: (02) 4998 7022 Open for Lunch on Saturday & Sunday or Dinner from Thursday to Monday

Your fantasy dinner party guests would be... Russell Becker, Will Ferrell, Rudolf Steiner, Greg LaFollette, André Ostertag, Michael Silacci, and of course, my family and a few close mates. What would your last meal and drinks be? My mum’s amazing lasagne and a crispy salad with a bottle of Domaine de la Romanée-Conti. It’s not cool, but I love… My job. Unfortunately, so many people don’t like what they do for a living. I am now one of the lucky ones who do. Working in the Hunter Valley, what’s not to love?! If you weren’t you, who would you like to be? My dog - he lives a life of leisure. What is your favourite product on offer at the moment? I’m loving our new Oakvale Apple Cider. It’s made from fresh hand-picked apples which are crushed and pressed at Oakvale. It has no added sugar and it’s so refreshing: just perfect to enjoy over summer. What is your favourite holiday destination (outside the Hunter Valley, of course)? Killcare on the Central Coast: it’s quiet and feels like home away from home.


As with winemaking, the cellaring, storage and serving of wine is based on a combination of science and art. Here, Luke Campbell of Vinified answers all your wine storage and service questions.


ith extensive experience in the wine industry and a great passion for wine, Luke is a qualified sommelier, a Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) diploma student, and has completed numerous vintages in Australia. Does a cellar have to be under my house? Where is the best place to store my wine? Andre Quips, Cookes Hill, NSW Luke Campbell: For practicality, we can’t all have a ‘Bat Cave’ under our house in which to store our ageing jewels. Wine storage is a problem that almost every wine enthusiast encounters. Ideally, the best place to store wine in your house - if not in an underground cavern - is in a place that is well-ventilated and away from direct light, where a cool, constant temperature can be maintained. The ideal wine cellar temperature is between 5 and 18 degrees celsius, and needs to remain constant and not fluctuate. A gradual change of a few degrees between seasons and

air circulation will not affect your wine. (In fact, air circulation is necessary.) Humidity should also be considered: relative humidity is allimportant for keeping corks moist, labels on (excess humidity can rot labels), and mould at bay. Ideal humidity is around 75–80 per cent. If space and temperature are still an issue, then storing your wines in their original packaging, either in wooden boxes or cardboard cartons, is also useful for moderating temperature.

So have a look for that spot. Consider carefully. It is usually in the middle of the house, away from any external walls or influences. Collectors are very imaginative with their spaces. You can utilise areas like under the stairs, wardrobes, or even those dark corners of the garage. Alternatively, you could invest in a wine cabinet that can provide you with the optimal storage conditions you’re looking for. Send your cellaring questions to

Avoiding heat at all costs is paramount when cellaring wine. Excessive heat can also alter a wine’s physical and chemical stability - evident, for example, in a wine with a cloudy or brownish appearance, or leaking bottles.

Vinified provides individual and commercial wine enthusiasts a personal cellar management service that includes advice on appraisal, valuation, cellaring, liquidation and optimum drinking conditions. p 03 9867 1375

Australia’s most exclusive cellar management service


2011 Margan Frizzante

RRP $17

Light green in colour with a very fine fizz. The wine displays a bouquet of fresh lemon and lime with hints of crushed nettle. The palate is balanced between the sweet fruit and citrus acid. Enjoy now as a young slightly fizzy low alcohol style. Makes a great aperitif. Food Match - Tagliatelle with prawns, zucchini, rocket pesto, lemon and shaved bottarga at Margan Restaurant.

2011 Tintilla Estate Hunter Semillon Angus

RRP $30

An outstanding Hunter Valley Semillon, taken from a block that consistently wins awards. Hand- picked and pressed with minimal skin contact. “A powerful, structured Semillon, with a grapefruit zest and mineral character laying the foundation for a long future” said Halliday. ‘Distinct amongst Hunter Semillons’. Gold at Hunter Valley Wine Show 2012. Food Match - Crisp, cool refreshment on a summer’s day; best with fresh oysters.

P 02 6579 1372 E

P 02 6574 7093 E

Cellar Door Open 7 days 10am - 5pm

Cellar Door Open 7 Days 10:30am - 6pm

1238 Milbrodale Road BROKE

725 Hermitage Road POKOLBIN

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2011 Tempus Two Pewter Semillon

RRP $30 $24 for Pewter Members

2011 First Creek Winemaker’s Reserve Semillon

RRP $35

Lifted lemon and lime aromas complemented by complex mineral and floral undertones. A beautifully lean Semillon with classic citrus flavours balanced by soft natural fruit. Ed Jouault Trophy winner at the 2012 Hunter Valley Wine Show for Best One Year Old Dry White.

“The talented Liz Jackson is responsible for one of the Semillons of the vintage - again. It is elevated above the pack thanks to a palate that ripples with fine minerality. Marksman accuracy of kaffir lime, anise and granny smith apples. Taut, pristine, energetic, perfumed. Pure magnificence!” 96 points Tyson Stelzer, Winepress - Wines of the Week.

Food Match - Classic match with fresh seafood including fresh local Port Stephens Oysters.

Food Match - Any seafood. We love it with kingfish sashimi and an Asian green salad.

P 02 4993 3999 E

P 02 4998 2992 E

Cellar Door Open 7 days 10am - 5pm (excluding Good Friday and Christmas Day)

Cellar Door Open 7 days 9:30am - 5pm Daily winery tours 10:30am

Corner of Broke & McDonalds Road POKOLBIN

600 McDonalds Road POKOLBIN


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2011 Hungerford Hill Hunter Valley ‘Classic’ Semillon

RRP $25

Bright lemon yellow with green tones. Intriguing and persistent aromas of limes and hints of acacia flower. Astute citrus flavours on the palate are crisp and mouth-watering. The subtle flinty character provides interest and combines with natural fruit acid for a long and interesting finish. Food Match - Beautifully matched with the cured Atlantic salmon tartare from Muse Restaurant & Café. P 02 4998 7666 E Cellar Door Open Sunday to Thursday 10am - 5pm Friday & Saturday 10am - 6pm 2450 Broke Road POKOLBIN

2006 Brokenwood Maxwell Vineyard Semillon

RRP $50

Now available at Cellar Door Winning Gold at the 2012 Sydney Royal Wine Show, this impressive Semillon is from a year that will reward right now or with further bottle age. Excellent luminous green/yellow colour at six years of age. Even at six years of age (on release) the aromas are not yet fully developed although some honey/toasty character are evident. With further age the lanolin/vanillin richness will build further on the back palate. Food Match - Pairs perfectly with Asian food or any seafood, especially fresh shucked oysters. P 02 4998 7559 E Cellar Door Open Monday to Saturday 9.30am - 5pm Sunday 10am - 5pm 401-427 McDonalds Road POKOLBIN

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2011 Ridge View ‘Sweet Tooth’ Late Harvest Viognier

RRP $25

2012 Tulloch Vineyard Selection Verdelho

RRP $18

A delightful wine displaying a bright golden hue with aromas of apricot and melon. The generous palate is long and complex, with layers of white peach, apricot and nectarine underpinned by subtle tropical notes of passionfruit and mango. The sweetness is beautifully balanced by the eclectic flavour profile and delicate acid structure. Certain to satisfy all those with a ‘sweet tooth’.

The fruit for this wine was selected from the JYT home vineyard in Pokolbin and a parcel of premium Verdelho from our award-winning vineyard in the Upper Hunter.

Food Match - The perfect accompaniment to a cheese or fruit platter enjoyed on Ridge View Restaurant’s verandah.

Food Match - Drink it now with your favourite chilli, spice and Asian flavours. Chilli Crab anyone?

P 02 6574 7332 E Cellar Door Open Wednesday to Sunday 10am – 5pm 273 Sweetwater Road POKOLBIN


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This is a vibrant and lively wine. Rich tropical fruit, musk stick and lime aromas progress into a palate loaded with typical varietal characters of tropical fruits and lively spice balanced by a fine acid finish.

P 02 4998 7580 E Cellar Door Open 7 days 10am - 5pm Corner McDonalds & DeBeyers Road POKOLBIN

NV Bimbadgen Sparkling Rosé

RRP $20

Pale salmon pink in colour with a fine bead. A highly aromatic bouquet of strawberries, with nuances of yeast creaminess adding to the overall complexity. The palate is bursting with bright flavours of creamy red berries with a fine, mouth-filling mousse, and balanced by zingy fruit acidity. Food Match - Ideal aperitif style. A great accompaniment to canapés or tapas. P 02 4998 4650 E Cellar Door Open Sunday to Thursday 10am - 5pm Friday and Saturday 10am - 7pm 790 McDonalds Road POKOLBIN

2010 Wombat Crossing Vineyard Jump Up Creek Hunter Valley Rosé RRP $18 Made as a single vineyard dry rosé wine, we picked the grapes separately and earlier than our Shiraz, to emphasise the acid and fruit intensity. Strawberries and cream, floral and a hint of spice lift from the glass with fresh fruit and crisp acid on the palate, giving the wine a fresh dry finish. Food Match - Barbecued salmon, Thai foods, Camembert or just drink it at lunch! P 02 6574 7357 E Cellar Door Open Saturdays 10.45am - 4.45pm Sundays 10am - 3pm Or by appointment. 530 Hermitage Road POKOLBIN

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2012 Oakvale Chardonnay

RRP $20

This refined, elegant Chardonnay shows great complexity on the palate with generous stone fruit, citrus overtones and subtle underlying oak. A crisp clean finish and lingering minerality make this a light easy drinking style. Food Match - Chicken and veal dishes, smoked charcuterie platter or just with good company and conversation. P 02 4998 7088 E Cellar Door Open 7 days 10am - 5pm 1596 Broke Road POKOLBIN


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2011 Ernest Hill Shareholders Shiraz

RRP $40

This wine is medium bodied, displaying lush, ripe blackberry and mulberry flavours, subtle spice and a hint of those traditional Hunter Valley earthy and savoury characteristics. Smooth tannins are enhanced by the toasty vanillan flavours from twelve months maturation in French oak barrels. Multi-medal winner and five star rating by Winestate Magazine 2012. Food Match - enjoy with seared rump of kangaroo or aged Angus beef. P 02 4991 4418 E Cellar Door Open 7 days 10am - 5pm 307 Wine Country Drive NULKABA

Here is some great news on the dining front. Beltree have extended their opening hours to include breakfast on Sunday from 9am til 11am. Serving contemporary Italian, Guy & Jess Parkinson have succumb to the pleas of Hunter Valley locals and are now open on Friday and Saturday for lunch and dinner, and Sunday for breakfast and a lovely long lunch. To avoid missing out, bookings are recommended. 266 Hermitage Road, Pokolbin. P 02 6574 7216 E W

Pukara Estate has released a tasty new Caramelised Onion Jam. With a hint of smokiness this ‘agrodolce’ style onion jam is the perfect accompaniment to a variety of dishes from steak sandwiches to quiches and tarts. You can taste the whole range of gourmet products at a Pukara Estate Tasting Room or simply order online. Their gourmet hampers are a perfect gift for dedicated foodies.

Television wine commentator Andrew Grubb combines his creative tour planning skills and his world-wide wine knowledge to bring you locally operated Wine & Grubb Tastebud Adventure Tours. Choose from private or mixed wine tours catering up to 13 people. He also offers transfer and charters.

2347 Broke Road, Pokolbin & 1440 Denman Road, Muswellbrook.


P 02 6547 1055

P 0417 680 225 W



Read all about it ... what’s new in the Hunter Valley

Visit Hunter Belle Cheese in the picturesque Upper Hunter to experience the delights of gourmet handmade cheeses, fudges and gelato all made from local Brown Swiss cow’s milk. The kids will be delighted to try hand milking the life-size model cow Bessie, and can learn all about milk and the dairy industry. Located just north of Muswellbrook on the New England Highway, Hunter Belle Cheese also has a licensed café offering breakfast and lunch, and is open seven days a week. 75 Aberdeen Street, Muswellbrook. P 02 6541 5066 E W

Located at the beautiful Tempus Two complex, Boy O Boy is the latest addition to the Hunter Valley food scene. The restaurant delivers amazing food with a French twist and an emphasis on freshness. The well balanced wine list showcases a different local winery each month to create an unforgettable food and wine experience. Open Thursday to Monday 12:30pm to 3pm then 6pm til 9:30pm. The restaurant is small so bookings are highly recommended. Corner Broke & McDonalds Road, Pokolbin. P 02 4998 6980 E W

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t’s summer time in the Hunter Valley, and grapes aren’t the only luscious things in abundance and ripe for the picking.

The local seas and rivers are full of fish, crabs, prawns and oysters, and gardens and orchards groan under the weight of deliciously fresh produce. It’s a time local Hunter Valley chefs embrace and celebrate with amazing dishes inspired by the sun, the sea and the earth’s natural goodness. “Every season brings much anticipation for creative chefs, but none more than summer. Along with seafood, we see the return of ‘sweet’. Sweet stone fruits, berries and tomatoes, and, not to be forgotten, the fruit of gods, and my favourite: the black fig,” said Troy RhoadesBrown, Chef and Owner of Muse Restaurant & Café and Muse Kitchen. Matt Dillow, Chef and Owner of The Verandah Restaurant, agreed: “Figs are my favourite summer ingredient. Fresh, grilled, stewed, in ice-cream, whatever way you can serve them, I just love,” he said. “My wife, Monika, nurtures our fig trees, and every summer we are rewarded with the most amazing sweet fruit.” Local figs are sourced from Tinkler’s in Pokolbin, restaurant and home gardens, the next door neighbour’s backyard, and even the occasional wild fig on the side of the road - none go unnoticed or untouched. Ripe red tomatoes, especially heirloom tomatoes, are another favourite of the season and are utilised on just about every menu. “When tomatoes are in season, I am happy,” said Andy Wright, Chef and Owner of The Cellar Restaurant and The Olive Tree Restaurant. “I love to serve them simply, with some local olive oil and a few white anchovies.”

PICTURED OPPOSITE Peaches and Corn by Chris Elfes


Mark Stapleton, Executive Chef and Owner of Restaurant Botanica, said growing flavoursome oldfashioned tomatoes is one of his triumphs.

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“Summer usually sees our garden produce numerous varieties of heirloom tomatoes, which we love to present in a simple salad with Binnorie Dairy feta and fresh basil, also from our garden,” said Mark. “There is something very special about a perfectly ripe tomato.” Lisa Margan, Chef and Owner of Margan Restaurant, believes a highlight of summer food is allowing the produce to shine and speak for itself. “With so much wonderful produce available, the season lends itself to fuss-free dining and entertaining,” she said. “Our guests particularly love that our dishes feature produce we have grown ourselves in our organic garden, orchard, olive groves and bee hives.”

The fruits of


Donna Hollis, Executive Chef at RidgeView Restaurant, also delights in having deliciously fresh produce on hand. “During summer, our RidgeView garden flourishes with fresh fruit, vegetables and herbs that allow us to constantly change our menu and incorporate these home-grown delicacies into our dishes,” she said. “With such a great range of fresh fruits in season, there are so many possibilities to make an otherwise simple dish into something amazing.” With long, sun-filled days and the concert season attracting holiday makers, the region takes on an air of excitement during summer. The restaurants and cellar

doors are filled with happy, carefree people enjoying what the Hunter Valley does best. “I love seeing people kick back and enjoy a particularly long lunch with friends and family,” said George Francisco, Executive Chef at Robert’s Restaurant and Tower Estate. “Watching a beautiful woman in a summer dress enjoy a Tower Estate Muscat icy-pole is an added bonus.” “Late summer has all the action of the grape harvest, which starts at the end of January and goes through to March. There is a great regional buzz, and it’s a time when the region has a particular sense of community and camaraderie,” said Lisa Margan.

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When tomatoes are in season, I am happy.

If there is a downside to summer for Hunter Valley restaurants, it would have to be the extreme heat experienced in a commercial kitchen. Although most kitchens are well prepared to cope with the rise in summer temperatures, with ovens and stove tops going most of the day and night, it is impossible to keep the kitchens cool. “It gets pretty hot in the kitchen, although a cold beer at the end of service always hits the right spot,” said Andy Wright. And, according to Ebonnie Newby, Executive Chef at Esca Bimbadgen, the chefs and kitchen staff aren’t the only ones to suffer. “The equipment also often struggles in the heat,” she said. “And you can bet, if anything is going to break down or blow up, it will be on a hot, busy summer day, right in the middle of service.” However, for Adam Ireland of Twine Restaurant, it’s a case of ‘if you can’t beat them join them’. He is taking his cooking to a new scene with an outdoor kitchen. “This will be my first summer in the Hunter Valley, and while I’ll miss being at the beach, I’m looking forward to experiencing a true Hunter Valley summer, including a few glasses of chilled local wine and watching the stunning vineyards and their transformation over harvest,” said Adam. 38

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And, with so much chat about food, what about the perfect wine to pair with it? Of course, in the Hunter Valley, that would have to be Semillon: a young, crisp style that matches perfectly with seafood and vegetable dishes. A toasty aged Semillon is ideal with dishes such as fresh figs stuffed with feta and wrapped in prosciutto. “A good Rosé is also a great match with ‘pink foods’, like ham, quail and tuna,” advised Lisa Margan. PICTURED CLOCKWISE FROM ABOVE Fresh ripe tomatoes, summer salad, figs and proscuitto

Muse Kitchen boasts a more personal approach to food, wine and service delivering European inspired food that is season and produce driven. Muse Kitchen, located at the new Keith Tulloch Winery on Hermitage Road Pokolbin, is the newest venture for huband and wife team Troy and Megan Rhoades-Brown of Muse Restaurant and CafĂŠ. Lunch: Wed - Sun: 12noon - 3pm Available for private functions by request. Keith Tulloch Wines Lot 17 Hermitage Rd, Pokolbin T: 02 4998 7899 E:

lifestyle art


the vines WORDS BY Virginia Mitchell & IMAGES BY Todd Fuller


BREATHE summer 2012/13


riving through the historic village of Wollombi, the last thing one expects is to be confronted by a three-metre high, steel grater - yes, a grater: the kind you use for cheese or carrots - standing majestically on a rise overlooking the quaint village shops. Each year from November to January, strange appearances like this occur in this sleepy quarter of the Hunter Valley. This is the time when the highly acclaimed exhibition project Sculpture in the Vineyards takes over the Wollombi Valley. Jimmy Rix’s ‘Greater Grater’ was part of the exhibition two years ago, and this year’s entries are no less extraordinary. Ranging from sophisticated, modernist artworks not out of place in an inner city gallery, to oversized outdoor pieces that revel in their exposure to sun and wind, set against a backdrop of hillsides and valleys, to whimsical and often ephemeral works specifically designed for their situation in the vineyards, the exhibition celebrates sculpture in all its forms.

PICTURED ABOVE TOP LEFT TO RIGHT Harrie Fasher’s ‘Head in the Clouds’, Penny Philpott’s ‘Chained’, PICTURED ABOVE Felicity Yorsten and Cassandra Daw’s ‘Ichonotraces’ PICTURED LEFT Senden Blackwood’s ‘Asura’

In 2012 Sculpture in the Vineyards marks ten years of bringing outstanding art to the Hunter Valley. The project’s Director, Tara Morelos, is thrilled with the number and quality of 2012’s entries, which see the event becoming the largest outdoor sculpture exhibition in Australia. This year, 100 artists have had their work selected for exhibition from over 130 entries.

They include highly respected artists such as Rae Bolotin, who shows regularly with Stella Downer Gallery in the Danks Street arts precinct. Coincidentally, Stella Downer was instrumental in establishing the first Sculpture in the Vineyards in 2002. Rae’s work has focussed on plant forms for many years and her sculpture ‘Seed’, at Undercliff Winery, continues that interest. Inspired by tiny seeds found near her studio on the edge of Wollemi National Park, it is constructed from hand-beaten stainless steel and then coloured through a chemical modification of the metal’s surface. She explains, “It is done in a vacuum chamber with a variety of gases pumped in at different time intervals. This technology was first invented by Russian spaceship engineers and it is this juxtaposition between art and science, organic and steel, where I tease out the meaning of the static forms, bringing them to life.” Will Coles also works with contemporary technology to create artworks that are often undetectable as artworks. Using a sophisticated and almost indestructible resinlike material, Will casts modified versions of everyday utilitarian objects such as mobile phones, televisions and suitcases that he frequently leaves in unexpected places - at bus stops, in parks, outside buildings: the apparently discarded detritus of modern life. In ‘Sushi’, discarded, fish-shaped sauce containers lie scattered across a stretch of grass at Stonehurst Wines - a permanent reminder of a fleeting picnic, perhaps? His work has an affinity with that of Banksy, the camera-shy English graffiti artist, as a form of commentary on contemporary society. Some artists focus on the transient in quite a different way. Every year, Japanese-born Akira Kamada spends months collecting vine prunings, which he weaves into huge sitespecific sculptures. His works are part of, and emerge from, the landscape among which he lives and works. Other works, such as Penny Philpott’s ‘Chained’, are designed so as to only have meaning in the site of exhibition. The chains wrapped around the ancient wooden posts at Undercliff Vineyard could be easily mistaken for farm equipment. Strangely, this is what makes them so successful as artworks. The point of site-specific art is that it has its greatest resonance and meaning only at the location for which it has been created.

BREATHE summer 2012/13


Sendon Blackwood’s work, by contrast, sits boldly in the landscape. ‘Asura’, an impressive and elegant work, is carved from stone that the artist found near his home in Orange. Sendon has twice won the Phillip Cox and Janet Hawley Acquisitive prize at Bermagui Sculpture on the Edge. Sendon’s work is sensuous and tactile, inviting us to touch and connect with the natural stones and, through them, the landscape itself. The fluidity and movement he creates contradicts the solid permanence of the granite stone. Jimmy Rix, who lives and works between Wollombi and Sydney, is again represented in this exhibition with the steel sculpture ‘Shy’, a modernist representation of a little pony in a field. We notice its beauty and fragility, somewhat at odds with the sturdiness of its material. The work reflects on the artist’s childhood memories and his connection to the past. Ponies have always been an essential part of agricultural and country life, and for the coal-rich areas nearby, ponies also played an important role in the mines that run deep below this verdant wine-growing region. Jimmy’s Greater Grater is now located opposite Stonehurst Wines at Cedar Creek, on the road between Cessnock and Wollombi. Emerging sculptor, Harrie Fasher, has also created art that celebrates the horse. Installed at Wollombi Village Wines is Harrie’s most recent work in a series that explores the history and character of the horse. A former equestrian, Harrie’s deep understanding of the horse is expertly communicated through her outstandingly powerful yet delicate steel sculptures. Also look out for the sculptures that their hosts could not let go of, including Jesse Graham’s ‘Russel The Rhino’, made from stainless steel, brass, tin, iron, and aluminium and bits and pieces. It has graced the entrance to Wollombi Village Vineyard since 2007.


BREATHE summer 2012/13

Amanda Humphries’ ‘Canopy’, a gorgeous site-specific piece from 2011, uses little ceramic bells inscribed with text, swaying and speaking on the breeze, and is suspended from a graceful willow at Undercliff Wines, itself a natural sculpture park. After hosting Sculpture in the Vineyards over the past nine years, Jane and Peter Hamshere of Undercliff Wines have developed a keen eye for works sensitive to the environment. The couple has donated the $2,500.00 prize money for the best site-specific sculpture in the exhibition - the only prize of its kind in Australia. This year, it has been awarded to Felicity Yorston and Cassandra Daw for their work ‘Ichonotraces’, which is a response to their concern about the fragmentation and destruction of native animal habitats. Sculpture in the Vineyards continues into January 2013. The spectacular sculptures are located at Wollombi Wines; Undercliff Wines, Wollombi; Wollombi Village Vineyard; Stonehurst Wines at Cedar Creek; Noyce Brothers Wines; and in the village of Wollombi itself.

PICTURED ABOVE CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT Will Coles’s ‘Sushi’, Rae Bolotin’s ‘Seed Form 2’, Jimmy Rix’s ‘Shy’

A true ‘local’ cheese tasting experience. We are providores of our own products as well as other local and imported cheeses, gourmet foods and home to the Hunter Valley Gelato Company. Purchase our products either to take home or sit and indulge in store with a glass of local wine or beer. Smelly’s Kitchen delivers fresh French-style bread, gourmet pizzas, stuffed baguettes, burgers and chips. VIP cheese tastings available $3 per person.

Purchases over $50 receive a 10% discount. All VIP tastings must be pre-booked.

STOP! No need to look any further. We stock all your local favourite cheeses as well - Smelly’s own, Binnorie Dairy, Hunter Belle plus other favourites from around the country and the globe. • A gourmand’s delight - you have to see it to believe it! Come on in, have a big snoop around. • Enjoy Merlo coffee with hand made Adora chocolate. • Hampers, Wedding Fromage Cakes and Gelato Cakes also can be ordered. Give us a call. • Conveniently open 7 days (closed Christmas Day).

Rustic Mediterranean inspired cuisine in a spectacular outdoor setting. Views from every table of manicured vines, picturesque countryside and the winding Hunter River. Saturday lunch 12-3pm Sunday breakfast & lunch 10am-3pm Wyndham Estate Dalwood Rd, Dalwood via Branxton

Ph 02 4938 1831


• One Glass Rating (Recommended) 2008, 2009, 2010 & 2011 Fine Wine Partners Wine List of the Year Awards • One Glass Rating 2010, 2011 & 2012 Sydney Morning Herald Good Food Guide

Chef/Owner Andrew Wright is passionate about sourcing the freshest and best quality local ingredients. His ever-changing menu showcases his talent for combining contemporary Australian fare with the influence of European traditions, presented in a simple and uncomplicated manner.

Open for lunch and dinner bookings recommended • Indoor and outdoor dining • Various menu options including fixed price, à la carte and degustation • Air-conditioned in summer • Open fire in winter • Fully licensed

“Such good food in such unpretentious surroundings is worthy of rural France.” THE LONDON SUNDAY TIMES

The Cellar is a hot spot for locals and a must for new visitors to the region. Hunter Valley Gardens Village Broke Road, Pokolbin. Tel: 4998 7584

BREATHE summer 2012/13


WHAT’S ON DECEMBER CHRISTMAS LIGHTS SPECTACULAR Now until Saturday January 26, 2013 Over 250,000 new lights have been added to 2012 Christmas Lights Spectacular at Hunter Valley Gardens ensuring that the event, with over 1.25 million lights in total, will be the best yet! The Gardens are filled with vibrant colour, incredible light and sound displays every night until Saturday 26th January, 2013 (excluding Christmas Day and night). 2090 Broke Road Pokolbin. P 02 4998 4000 W

CHRISTMAS DAY AT ROBERT’S RESTAURANT Tuesday December 25, 2012 Join Executive Chef George Francisco and the team at Tower Estate for an all-day Christmas feast at Robert’s Restaurant. Seven course degustation menu for $185pp. Kids meals also available. Games on the lawn and fun for the whole family. Halls Road, Pokolbin. P 02 4998 7022 W

NYE at ESCA BIMBADGEN Monday December 31, 2012


Indulge in fine food, wine and surrounds of wine country to see in the New Year at Esca Bimbadgen. Live entertainment from ‘Whiskey Tango Foxtrot’. $135pp or $170pp with matching wines. Members discount applies. For reservations, email 790 McDonalds Road, Pokolbin. P 02 4998 4600 W

ART TRAIL Wednesday January 30 to Sunday February 24, 2013

NEW YEARS EVE MASQUERADE AT TOWER LODGE Monday December 31, 2012 Tower Estate’s Masquerade Ball at Tower Lodge. George Francisco is cooking his best nine meals from the past nine years. Black tie and masks required. Live entertainment. $295pp including selected Tower Estate wines and Champagne. Halls Road, Pokolbin. P 02 9488 7022 W

NEW YEAR’S EVE AT HVG Monday December 31, 2012 Bring in the New Year at the Hunter Valley Gardens and enjoy the night with the entire family including live entertainment, amusement rides and the best fireworks in the Valley. 2090 Broke Road Pokolbin. P 02 4998 4000 W

... where the vineyards meet the river. Cellar door open daily 9.30am-4.30pm

(closed Christmas Day, Good Friday and for ticketed events)

Restaurant open Saturday 12pm-3pm & Sunday 10am-3pm 700 Dalwood Road, Dalwood NSW 2335 T 02 4938 3444 F 02 4938 3555 E

Over 18 talented local artists will show at Art Trail at Cessnock Regional Art Gallery. 16 Vincent Street, Cessnock. W

Jazz at Adina Vineyard Sunday January 27, 2013 Chill out on the lawns of Adina Vineyard with tunes by Saxanova. 4pm til 8pm. $59pp includes dinner. 492 Lovedale Road, Lovedale. P 02 4930 7473 W

FEBRUARY Daylight Saving Friday February 1 to Sunday February 3, 2013 The Newcastle Theatre Company brings their latest production, Daylight Savings to Adina Vineyard. 492 Lovedale Road, Lovedale. P 02 4930 7473 W

A DAY ON THE GREEN ELVIS COSTELLO Saturday February 2, 2013 Elvis Costello headlines an amazing lineup at this ADOTG including Australian legends The Sunnyboys, Jo Jo Zep &

Ridge View ‘s Valentine’s Day Thursday February 14, 2013 Enjoy an alfresco lunch or candlelit dinner; receive a glass of bubbles, three course meal (with a chocolate indulgence dessert to share) plus coffee & petit fours. $55 pp or $70pp with matching wines. Bookings essential. 273 Sweetwater Road, Pokolbin. P 02 6574 7332 W

Summer “IN SEASON” DINNER Friday February 15, 2013 RidgeView’s Head Chef Donna Hollis will create a sumptuous four course dinner using seasonal produce from the organic garden plus bubbles and canapés. $65pp/$85pp with matching wines. BYO & RidgeView wine at cellar door prices. 273 Sweetwater Road, Pokolbin. P 02 6574 7332 W

CAROLE KING Saturday February 16, 2013 Iconic singer-songwriter, Carole King returns to Hope Estate as part of her Natural Woman Tour. Don’t miss one of the most successful and revered female artists in pop music history. 2213 Broke Road, Pokolbin. P 02 4993 3510 or 1800 777 444

Jazz at Adina Vineyard Sunday February 24, 2013 Chill at Adina Vineyard with tunes by George Washingmachine. 2:30pm til 4pm. $59pp includes four course lunch. 492 Lovedale Road, Lovedale. P 02 4930 7473 W

MARCH THE VERANDAH RESTAURANT LOCALS NIGHT Sunday March 3, 2013 It’s Tastes of the Ocean Night. 6:30pm start with complimentary canapés and bubbles followed by a five course tapas style degustation. $50pp. BYO & no corkage. Palmer’s Lane, Pokolbin. P 02 4998 7231 W

HUNTER CHEFS & CO AUTUMN WORKSHOP & LUNCH Monday March 4, 2013 Hunter Chefs & Co is hosting their autumn workshop and luncheon at Esca Bimbadgen, Monday March 4, 2013. $75pp members or $100pp non-members. 790 Mc Donalds Road, Pokolbin. E W

A DAY ON THE GREEN NEIL YOUNG Saturday March 9, 2013 Legendry Neil Young & Crazy Horse grace the Hunter Valley in their first

headline tour since 2003. Promising both new material and their classic hits. 790 McDonalds Road, Pokolbin. P 136 1000 W

CMC ROCKS THE HUNTER Friday March 15 to Sunday March 17, 2013 Three days of non-stop country music at Hope Estate billed as Australia’s biggest international country & roots festival. 2213 Broke Road, Pokolbin. P 02 4993 3510 or 1800 777 444

GAME ON AT TWINE RESTAURANT Saturday March 23, 2013 Twine Restaurant at Wynwood Estate comes alive with an eight-hour 12 course food and wine event like no other. With live musicians and magicians, this is the time to get a group of friends together to party. $220pp. 2pm til 10pm. 310 Oakey Creek Road, Pokolbin. P 02 4998 7449 W

COLOURS of the Country II Friday March 29 to Sunday May 5, 2013 The Alice Springs Beanie Festival’s Colours of the Country celebrates the growth of the beanie as an art form. Work also highlighted by Indigenous artists from the Central Desert region who regularly collaborate on this cross cultural event. 16 Vincent Street, Cessnock. W

Picturesque Roman tiled buildings alongside mature European trees make the setting absolutely perfect for wine tasting, weddings or just a picnic stop. 110 Old North Road, Pokolbin NSW • Cellar Door Open: Friday, Saturday & Sunday - 10am - 4pm •

Background image courtesy of Ella’s Fotoscapes

The Falcons, Tex Perkins & The Dark Horses, and Stephen Cummings. 790 McDonalds Road, Pokolbin. P 136 1000 W



WHAT’S ON EACH MONTH LOCALS NIGHT AT ROBERT’S RESTAURANT Tuesday and Wednesday Tuesday and Wednesday nights are local’s nights at Robert’s Restaurant. BYO no corkage, set menu pricing and special meals created each week just for the locals. Games on the lawns, and a great atmosphere for the whole family. Halls Road, Pokolbin. P 02 4998 7022 W

WHISPERING BROOK TOURS & TASTINGS Every Saturday Every Saturday during summer at 11:30am you can enjoy a tutored tour of Whispering Brook estate vineyards, olive groves, and winery followed by a tasting at the Cellar Door. Relax on the verandah with a gourmet antipasto and cheese platter for casual luncheon overlooking the estate’s vineyards and olive groves. Rodd Street, Broke. P 02 6579 2386 or 02 9818 4126 W

THE WORLD IN A GLASS Every Saturday & Sunday Fine tune your palate at First Creek Wines’ “The World in a Glass” wine school. Learn how wine is made, which the key Hunter Valley varieties are and how the region in which it was grown influences the taste of a wine. Along the way you’ll taste from around $600 worth of wine from the Hunter Valley, other Australian regions and France. 11am1pm Saturday & Sundays. $50 pp bookings essential. 600 McDonalds Road, Pokolbin. P 02 4998 2992 W

Cheese Factory WINE AND CHOCOLATE MASTERCLASS Most Saturdays & Sundays Be guided through a selection of the finest wines from Wyndham Estate, including their extensive Shiraz blends matched with premium chocolate from the Hunter Valley Chocolate Company. Classes begin 2pm at the Cellar Door. $10pp. Bookings essential. Dalwood Road, Dalwood. P 02 4938 3444 W

WINE EDUCATION, TOUR & TASTING Last Friday of each month Go on a guided tour of Hungerford Hill’s underground winery and sample wines till in the tank. Learn the characteristics of each wine while enjoying a range of canapés matched to enhance your tasting pleasure. Limited to 12 people. Bookings essential. 2450 Broke Road, Pokolbin. P 02 4998 7666 W

GEMELLI HIGH TEA One Sunday each month

BREATHE summer 2012/13

Hunter Valley Cheese Company have been producing handmade preservative free cheeses on site for over 15 years. • Factory Viewing and Tastings daily • Award Winning • Preservative Free • Made with Vegetarian Rennet • Complimentary Cheese Talk daily 11am & 3pm • Factory Outlet Sales and Discounts

“Blessed are the Cheesemakers” HUNTER VALLEY CHEESE FACTORY & SHOP McGuigan’s Complex, 447 McDonalds Road Pokolbin P: 4998 7744 E: W:


australian regional Food Store & food Café store and café

On January 27, February 3, and March 10, you can experience an afternoon of indulgence with High Tea at Gemelli Estate. Start with a glass of wine, followed by sweet and savoury treats overlooking the estate’s vineyard. Palmers Lane, Pokolbin. P 02 4998 7910 W

TALLAVERA GROVE VINEYARD TOUR Last Saturday of each month Take a guided walk through the beautiful vineyards of Tallavera Grove for some amazing photo opportunities and the chance to get an inside view on the life and times of a working vineyard. $5 pp. Bookings highly recommended. 749 Mount View Road, Mount View. P 02 4990 7535 W


Artisan Regional Cheesemakers

Sourced from state totastings state, lunch all day • produce city open to coast, inland to island, 7 days • 9am-5pm @ range of clean, taste our fantastic the small winemakers centre green Australian produce. 426 mcdonalds road pokolbin hunter valley

Breakfast to 12 noon p •9am 4998 6800 e • Lunch 12noon to 4.30pm w • & produce tastings

Open 7 days 9am to 5pm @ the small winemakers centre 426 McDonalds Road Pokolbin Hunter Valley

P: 4998 6800 E: W:

brochures flyers wine labels advertisements billboards posters logos signs letterheads business cards


illustrations with compliments envelopes booklets photographic styling winelists e-blasts packaging stickers lino prints newsletters invitations magazines postcards certificates presentation folders pull-up banners websites calenders prospectus

sally sneddon graphic design

4 alfred close east maitland p 4934 4781 e


Fourteen modern self catering suites or cottages Pool, Spa, Kids Play Gym Orchard, Chicken Run, Alpaca Feeding BBQ at each cottage and at the Poolside Cabanas

Open for Lunch Friday, Saturday & Sunday 12pm - 3pm.

INHOUSE FUNCTION CENTRE Gift Shop with Starline yarn and handknit clothing

1100 Milbrodale Rd, BROKE

6579 1081

Images by Ken Martin

TOP LEFT Keith Tulloch Wines - Aston Martin club car day. TOP RIGHT Len Evans Tutorial Reunion - Wine writer Nick Ryan, LET Trustee Iain Riggs & wine blogger Dave Brooks. BOTTOM RIGHT RidgeView team at a vineyard in Chile. BOTTOM Left A toast to the late Len Evans - 2012 Len Evans Tutorial Reunion.


in the Hunter Valley

Top LEFT Pat Auld leads a Master Class at Oakvale Wines. TOP RIGHT Stuart Hordern from Brokenwood, Chris Tyrrell from Tyrrell’s Wines and Nick Dry. BOTTOM RIGHT Addressing the Hagis Bob McLeish. BOTTOM LEFT The colour of Melbourne Cup Day at Esca Bimbadgen.


BREATHE summer 2012/13

James Halliday





SYDNEY | 0413 805 222 |

International Winemaker of the Year - IWSC 2009/2011/2012 Australian Producer of the Year - IWSC 2009/2011/2012 International White Winemaker of the Year - IWSC 2009/2012 “To have won International Winemaker of the Year for the third time in four years is an outstanding result for Australia and the McGuigan brand. We’ve come along way from our humble beginnings in the Hunter Valley. To be the only winery in the world to have won ‘world’s best winemaker’ three times is a testament to our commitment to quality. We can now proudly say that we are now one of the most awarded wineries in the world.” NEIL McGUIGAN McGuigan Cellar Door is a ‘must visit’ destination and there is no better time to join the Vintage Wine Club. Call in and taste a range of medal winning and Cellar Door only wines and, if time permits, ask about having a vertical tasting. We look forward to meeting you.

McGuigan Cellar Door Open 7 days 9.30am-5pm Groups welcome by appointment

Summer 2012-2013 Hunter Valley Breathe Magazine