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hobbes Oct 7th, 2004 10:11 PM

Wine tasting trip
Hi. I am new to the Aus forum as this will be my first trip! I gen travel - and post - on the Asia forum. My partner has a week long conference in Brisbane end Nov following which we would like to drive through some wine country. Any recos based on past experiences and websites or addresses for further info will be really wlecome. To tell u a bit about us & our traveling prefs - we generally like to plan ourselves rather than join tours (at least that's how we've done Asia & Eur), prefer boutique/small properties to large chains, enjoy nature, ambience, fun people....we thought we would rent a car then drive south towards either Sydney or Melbourne then fly out of there...but I am open to suggestions on a better way to plan this! Thanks so Fodors forums and all of you out there!

Daneille Oct 7th, 2004 11:02 PM

Queensland isn't really a wine growing area - it is hot and humid and not really kind to grapes. The best you will be able to do is the Stanthorpe/Granite Belt area (near the NSW border - so a bit of a drive from Brisbane). There are also a couple around the Mt. Tambourine Area of the Gold Coast and Eumundi area of the Sunshine Coast. If you go to Stanthorpe you could also make a stop in at Tenterfield which is the place in the song TENTERFIELD SADDLER the Peter Allen Song.

We did a very mememorable trip to the the Stanthorpe wineries, stayed in a very funny pub, did a pub crawl around Stanthorpe (5 or 6 pubs I think), dined at the pub across the road where we happened on the Ulysses (senior) bikers doing an annual trip thing, who let us party with them and share their flagons of sherry and port. It was a hoot. Managed to crawl around the wineries the following day a little rough around the edges (read sick as dogs) so my itinerary probably not the best to follow - but it was fun.

Paul_S Oct 7th, 2004 11:03 PM

Hi hobbes,

You are going to have to travel quite a ways to get to the nearest wine region from Brisbane. My suggestion is to get on a flight to Newcastle in NSW from Brisbane, there are daily flights between the two cities. From Newcastle you could hire a car and drive around the Hunter Valley vineyard area and stay at one of the places in the vineyard area like Peppers Convent, the link to this is below:

Once you have finished with the Hunter Valley vineyards you could drive on to Sydney which is another 2 hours south or return to Newcastle airport and fly down to Melbourne and take in the Yarra Valley wine region there.



hobbes Oct 7th, 2004 11:44 PM

Thank you Paul and Daneille. Just to clarify - am quite happy to get onto a plane from Brisbane to a good starting point then start driving. Mentioned that we will be in Brisbane just for some perspectiv - will def be posting again to ask all of you how to transfer between points, etc!

Paul_S Oct 8th, 2004 12:15 AM

Hi hobbes,

Well I would do it the way I suggested above. You can get VirginBlue and Jetstar aifares one way to Newcastle for as low as A$69. It all depends on the day of the week you want to travel.

There are quite a lot of vineyards available to do tastings at in the Hunter Valley so you might like to spend a couple of days there before moving on. If you are interested in seeing a bit more than just the vineyards then you could take a side trip into Port Stephens for a look around. To give you an idea of what is available to do in Port Stephens just follow the link below to see for yourselves:

Hope this helps.



PinotNoir Oct 8th, 2004 02:34 PM

I'd recommend hopping on a plane to Adelaide. That's what we did 2 years ago and will be doing again next month. From there you've got many options for super wine growing areas within a two hour drive of Adelaide, which is a neat place to visit in it's own right.
Barossa Valley - The granddaddy with great wineries and restaurants. Tanunda is a nice place to base yourself. B & B's are the way to go--you can actually rent a whole house for what you'd pay to get a small room in Napa.
Clare Valley - North of Barossa with some excellent wineries.
Adelaide Hills - Nearer to Adelaide.
McClaren Vale - Near Adelaide Hills, many excellent wineries.

tropo Oct 9th, 2004 11:58 AM

Hobbes, Queensland is slowly becoming recognised as a producer of good wines. Now some members on this board will disagree, but Queensland wine producing is getting better & better. Stanthorpe is getting a reputation for producing good wine. A region that is overlooked, is that around Kingaroy, where you could include a visit to Bunya Mountain National Park.
The wineries in this region, include Barambah Ridge Wines, Captain Paddocks Vineyard, Clovely Estate Wines, Crane Winery, Tipperary Estate Wines, Whistle Stop Wines, Ziebarth Wines, Stuart Range Wines,etc.
Here are some
and and
You could quite easily drive from Brisbane, via Esk, Yarraman, Nanango, to Kingaroy, then on your return to Brisbane, go via the Sunshine Coast or their hinterland.
Regards Leigh.

hobbes Oct 9th, 2004 07:38 PM

Thank u, all of u, who have shared ideas with me! Still open to more suggestions tho...

Daneille Oct 10th, 2004 04:25 PM

It's good to hear that you are willing to fly to good wine making areas.

IMO - the Rutherglen area of Victoria is fantastic for its bold reds and excellent fortifieds (but it is still around 3 hours from Melbourne). Closer to Melbourne is Yarra Valley (great whites and lighter reds and home of Domain Chandon - the Aussie home of Moet)and the Mornington Peninisula (again about 1 hours drive).

Out of Adelaide the Clare and Barossa Valleys are renowned and not that far from the city - the Coonawarra area a bit further afield but this is where Penfolds Grange comes from so the quality of wines is excellent.

hobbes Oct 12th, 2004 11:46 PM

Thank u for the till now great suggestions. On further thought we are thinking of flying to Melbourne, spending a couple nights there (tho I have read other posts on this forum comparing Sydeny and Melbourne with the former coming out tops!) then embarking on some wine tsating. What we would ideally like to do is identify vineyards which also provide B&B kind of overnight options either within the vineyard or nearby so we can drink without having to worry about driving. As I mentioned we gen like small, boutiqey places to stay...specific suggestions?

Daneille Oct 13th, 2004 12:00 AM

Mornington Peninsula:

Yarra Valley:

and I thought this place looked pretty lovely:

hobbes Oct 13th, 2004 08:26 PM

Thanks Danielle, checked out all your suggetions. Look amazing. Does anyone else have suggestions on specific places they have experienced/stayed at/heard good things about?

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