Long Table Lunch, Urban Winery, St Peters, New South Wales
A new crop of inner-city wineries offers visitors the chance to experience winemaking without leaving the city.
By Allie Metz
Published 28 February, 2017
From traditional tastings and educational courses to the not-so-traditional yoga and wine classes, the only thing these irreverent venues take seriously is the quality of the wine. As harvest time approaches, it’s the perfect opportunity for a hands-on learning experience that will take you from grape to glass in a fun and memorable way.
Urban Winery, St Peters, Sydney
A true pioneer of the trend, Urban Winery Sydney is the city’s only working winery. Housed in a rejuvenated industrial complex in the suburb of St Peters, the team released its first wine wholly made in the winery in 2016– a Rosé. This month they are set to begin their second harvest with Tempranillo grapes from Gundagai, which is about a two hour drive west of Canberra. The winery also features a cellar door, tasting bar and event space. In addition to tastings, Urban Winery offers educational winery tours, blend-your-own-wine classes and even yoga. Join the team every Sunday in March for a Harvest Lunch. Guests can stomp and plunge grapes before sitting down to a ploughman’s lunch at the communal long table.
Noisy Ritual, East Brunswick, Melbourne
Roll up your sleeves for a visit to Noisy Ritual, located on Lygon Street in the heart of Melbourne. You’ll be encouraged to get your hands (and feet) dirty as you live the winemaker’s philosophy of learning through doing. The cellar door is open Friday to Sunday, but head there during harvest time (March) to experience the real excitement. They’ll be offering hands-on tours, delicious food, live music and a chance to get involved in helping to make (and drink) the wine. Stomp grapes as you learn about winemaking directly from the winemaker or enjoy a guided tour of the facilities followed by a tasting of their full range of wines. Noisy Ritual kicks off its Vintage 2017 – a five- week celebration of winemaking, music and food – on Saturday 4 March.
Cake Wines, Redfern, Sydney
The Sydney suburb of Redfern is home to Cake Wines, an inner-city cellar door that brings wine appreciation to the masses. Pop in to taste their signature range of wines, as well as a few additional wines, craft beers and spirits selected by the team. Get involved with their School of Wine to learn more about wine growing, making and tasting with a relaxed, unpretentious approach. Cake Wines also hosts a regular calendar of great food and music events in their converted warehouse space.
At harvest time (usually starting in late February), small batch Adelaide Hills winery Vinteloper goes on the road with a pop-up winemaking and fine dining experience to demystify the winemaking process while allowing people to take part in some of the fun. The Urban Winery Project began close to its roots, with the inaugural event in Adelaide. Last year, Melbourne played host to the event and Sydney is gearing up for the excitement of the 2017 version. Guests can stomp grapes and learn about winemaking before sitting down to a four-course menu by Three Blue Ducks with paired wines from Vinteloper.
Handpicked Wines, Chippendale, Sydney
Nestled in one of Sydney’s hottest new neighbourhoods, Handpicked Wines is different to your average cellar door or wine bar. Here, the winemakers travel the best wine regions, including the Yarra Valley, Barossa Valley and Margaret River, in search of different grape varieties to produce wine under their own label. Pay a visit to the tasting bar for a flight of their latest releases, or try one of Handpicked Wines’ wine tasting and appreciation workshops and unique classes. Try Yoga and Wine for a one hour yoga session followed by a wine tasting, or create something beautiful with Zen Flower Arranging where you relax with cheese, wine and flowers.
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