The ultimate getaway for wine and food lovers, Orange is a must-visit for a few days of indulgence. With such a variety of vineyards to choose from, all within driving range of each other, its easy to explore and make the most of it – even if its just a weekend away.
I visited the region late July and from my experience, it’s one of those places you just can’t go wrong with. I squeezed in 6 vineyards over a weekend and enjoyed an amazing degustation at the renowned Racine restaurant. Each vineyard offered a diverse selection of wines to taste, accompanied by warm service and picturesque views.
In order of my favourites, here’s how I spent a weekend wine tasting in Orange, NSW:
Accommodation: De Russie Hotel
72 Hill St, Orange NSW 2800
De Russie hotel is a beautiful boutique hotel and the perfect place to stay. Arriving late after the reception had closed, they kindly emailed check-in instructions and left the room key out for collection. The room itself was modern, warm and comfortable with a fully-fledged kitchenette and complimentary breakfast. The location was perfectly situated to town and close to the shopping centre.
6 Vineyards To Visit In Orange
109 Summer Hill Ln
Step into owner and winemaker, Gerald Naef’s home and taste his boutique range of Chardonnay, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc, Rose, Pinot Noir, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz. Whatever you fancy, the selection of wines here were not only consistently great but offer something for everyone, along with Gerald’s warm hospitality.
954 Icely Rd
En route home, I stopped here for a final tasting – and I’m glad I did. The original school house on the estate which now serves as the Cellar Door was set with of Mayfield’s selection of cool climate varieties including Riesling, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir, Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, represented by its two labels, Mayfield Vineyard and Icely Road. I’ve completely fallen in love with Chardonnay since moving to Sydney and Mayfield was one of my favourites for this varietal.
298 Lake Canobolas Rd, Canobolas
Immerse yourself for an afternoon at Borrodell. I enjoyed Sunday lunch at its fine dining restaurant which overlooked the vineyards. The restaurant was light and airy with exceptional service and amazing quality food. After lunch I spent over an hour at the seller door tasting wines and chatting to the owner, Borry Gartrell who had plenty of fascinating stories to tell. The wine selection was diverse, I particularly loved Borrodell’s Gewürztraminer and its apple cider is a must-try . The property also boasts some of the oldest truffles trees in the area and sell fresh truffles at the cellar door if you’re looking to pick some up.
4. Ross Hill
134 Wallace Ln
If you’re a red lover, Ross Hill is a great place to try. They have some delicious Merlot, Shiraz, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Shiraz on offer. Its cellar door is a sun filled spacious room with plenty of seating and friendly service. Ross Hill is also Australia’s only Federal Government certified carbon neutral winery.
5. Philip Shaw
100 Shiralee Rd
One of the most picturesque properties, Phillp Shaw offers a great all-round selection of whites and reds. The tasting experience was a comparison between its 2 series – ‘The No. Series’ and ‘The Character Series’ with the later been the slighter higher price point. The set up is super spacious – perfect for larger groups.
6. De Salis
125 Mount Lofty Road
Pull up a chair on the deck overlooking the vines at De Salis and try its unique take on wine. Its minimalist winemaking philosophy was evident in the taste, each wine a standout in its own right and the chardonnay being my favourite of all. Retailing on a slightly higher price point, its handcrafted wines are produced using the classic French varieties, Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Pinot Meuniere – a selection sure to impress wine connoisseurs. It’s a bit off the beaten track but worth the effort if you’re looking to taste some unique wines.
Long lunch: Racine restaurant
42 Lake Canobolas Rd
The go-to place for the ultimate local produce experience, set in a unique green-walled dining room . Racine restaurant lived up to all its rave online reviews, delivering a delicious degustation menu and great service. It’s rustic farmhouse look, complete with an outdoor fire pit was the perfect set up for an afternoon of indulgence.