It’s nearly December. In many parts of the world, that means cold temperatures and hunkering indoors until the snow and bitter cold ceases to merciful above freezing temperatures. In other parts of the world, like those near or below the equator, December means summertime and things are just starting to sizzle. We here at WineNight welcome all seasons in all parts of the world. And in December, there is something particularly tantalizing about traveling Down Under to taste all the wines Australian vines have to offer.
It is a notoriously long flight to Australia from many parts of the world. So do consider making your Australian wine escape at least a few weeks, as the country boasts over 60 wine regions! Below you’ll find not only some of the best Australian wineries, the ones we’ve listed also happen to have accommodation. All the better to help immerse you day and night in the world of Australian wine!
Yarra Valley, Victoria
Victoria is one of Australia’s oldest wine regions. Its roots can be traced back to 1938 to a vineyard at Yering Station. This region, only an hour’s drive from Melbourne, is most famous for its Chardonnays, Shirazes, Pinot Noirs, and exciting winemakers known for their respect for the land and revolutionary production practices.
The Port Philip Estate, only an hour from Melbourne, is set in a natural, yet modern amphitheater on north and east-facing slopes and the vines are planted to nine hectares of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, with small plots of Sauvignon and Shiraz. It practices biological farming and a non-interventionist approach to fermenting wine. The estate’s accommodations are luxuriously modern, and the facility sits on a spectacular site on the picturesque Mornington Peninsula with panoramic views over undulating vineyards and the ocean.
As mentioned, this is the vineyard that put Victoria’s wines on the map. And you don’t get much closer to the action than at Chateau Yering, a country-house house with 32 suites decorated with four-poster beds and homey decor. Seventy wineries are on the doorstep. (pictured)
Barossa Valley, South Australia
Barossa Valley was settled in the mid-19th century and vines were planted around the same time, making it one of Australia’s oldest wine-producting regions. These days the valley is known for producing deep and complex Shirazes as well as Chardonnay, Riesling and Cabernet Sauvignon. With more than 150 wineries and 80 cellar doors, there are plenty of varieties to sample. Plus, this wine lover’s paradise is located only an hour’s drive north of Adelaide.
On this property, you’ll find Seize The Day, their 10 acre Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon vineyard, adjacent to their Cottage. This winery produces premium, single vineyard, Barossa Valley Shiraz and Cabernet wines which the region is famous for. The estate is next to Barossa’s best food and wine experiences, like Hentley Farm and Seppeltsfield Estate Winery, which offers the globally recognised “Barossa Wine, Food and Art Paradise.”
This converted 19th-century lodge has been converted into a contemporary hotel with seven large, luxury suites, some in separate cottages. There are, of course, wine-tasting tours, as well as only-in-Australia experiences like bird- and wildlife-spotting and a bush bath for two. (pictured)
Margaret River, Western Australia
Margaret River is probably the most famous wine region in Western Australia, adjacent to the Coastline and three hours drive from Perth. The region is known for its European-style wine, a climate comparable to Burgundy, France, and wines that are often compared to Bordeaux. Its most famous wines are the Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay that are produced by about 200 wineries which account for 20 percent of Australia’s premium wines.
This super stylish boutique hotel was built on the Empire Estate Vineyard nestled amongst tranquil pastures and undisturbed bushland with 12 acres dedicated to their vines. Though the Empire Hotel itself is not just a spot to drink wine, it is a retreat on the Margaret River, a few hours from Perth. The spa is a thing of beauty with stone baths, rainforest showers, and a steam room. There is no doubt this full-service retreat was built to pamper your body and awaken your senses.
For a whole lot of wining and dining, Cape Lodge is your private country house hotel with 22 rooms, a restaurant, 14,000-bottle wine cellar, spa, and vineyard in the heart of Margaret River wine country. They have plenty of wine tours to choose from, half-day, full-day or in-house tastings, as well as gourmet cooking lessons. Everything the foodie and wine lover could want and more. (pictured)
Do you have a favorite Australian winery retreat? Let us know in the comment section below!