Take a tour of these Mudgee wineries
The cellar door: It has an old fashioned country feel, with giant wisteria tree climbing over the tasting patio.
Order the: Low alcohol, sparkling baby pink Jodie Wilbertree. It looks like it should be sickeningly sweet – but it’s actually crisp and drinkable. Or, if you’re a red fan, the organic, sulphate free PF500 Red, which is juicy and very good value.
Snack on: Local produce, like Leaning Oak goat’s feta in a basil pesto.
The cellar door: It’s a post-modern marvel with absolute glass frontage overlooking the sloping hills.
Order the: Ridge of Tears shiraz – they make two versions, one in Orange and one in Mudgee. The Mudgee drop is a little smoother and lighter – but each is very characteristic of the area it was grown in.
Snack on: Freshly baked carrot cake from a local pastry chef.
The cellar door: It’s been built into a charming stone cottage, with happy wanderer vines crawling up its edifice.
Order the: Riesling. Winemaker Jacob Stein also makes wine for several other vineyards in the region, but the riesling he blends for the family business is a multi-award winner.
Snack on: Farm-to-table charcuterie at on-site restaurant Pipeclay Pumphouse. The salumi and other smoked meats are raised, processed and cured on-site.
The cellar door: It may be indoors, but that doesn’t diminish its drama. The cellar door is set in an old barrel room, with church pew seating and clusters of gilded wine bottles suspended from the ceiling.
Order the: Mudgee Pipeclay white port – it’s smooth and fruity, and in summer over ice it makes a perfect aperitif. Plus it’s organic – so basically guilt free.
Snack on: Chocolate. From Wednesdays to Sundays, the cellar door does a chocolate and wine pairing with locally-made pralines.
The cellar door: They’ve made it entirely out of shipping containers, with west-facing glass frontage to catch those pretty Mudgee sunsets.
Order the: Berbera or Vermentino. First Ridge specialises in Italian varietals that go beyond your standard pinot grigio and sangiovese (though they do those too), so pick something you haven’t had tried before.
Snack on: An Italian-style aperitivo board to match your Italian wine.
The cellar door: There is a simple but generously sized outdoor area, overlooking the vineyards.
Order the: Cabernet sauvignon – Moothi is one of the highest wineries in the Mudgee region, and cab sav was one of the first varietals the estate cultivated.
Snack on: Local cheeses from High Valley, house-made pastrami and, in the summer time, fresh cherries you can pick yourself from the winery’s orchard.