Monday, May 31, 2010

An Autumn Day in Mudgee

Included in our recent weekend getaway to Rylstone, (see previous post!)on the Saturday, we drove a pleasant forty minutes, to spend an autumn day in the town of Mudgee.
On the scenic drive, about halfway between Rylstone & Mudgee, we passed a little bus shelter with a bold red seat, that caught my eye...."stop I need to take a photo of that for my blog!!" a demand my family is becoming very accustomed to!

Arriving in Mudgee we went to the weekend Railway Markets, to browse the local produce, here I tasted and purchased some delicious Indian relish and fruit chutney.
We then drove out of town a little way to visit one of the three organic vineyards and wineries, I had on my to do list for the day.
"Thistle Hill & Erudgere Winery" was our first stop.

They have been supplying their beautiful organic wines to me the past few months, to serve in my janeCOOKS Cooking Classes. It was lovely to see the vineyards and winery and visit their cellar door, to taste some more of their wines and hear of the new releases they are bottling now.

After this we drove back through the centre of town, past the prominent clock tower and out along Ulan Rd, towards where the bulk of the vineyards and wineries are located in Mudgee.
We stopped at the "High Valley Wine & Cheese Cafe" for lunch.

Here you can taste both their wines and cheeses, as well as enjoy a lovely lunch, either indoor by the fire or outdoor in their gorgeous sunny back garden.

We tried a couple of yum dishes " Roast Lamb Pizzetta with Honey Mustard Dressing" $18.50

the "Chicken, Mushroom & Leek Pie with crisp garden salad and tomato chilli jam" $17.50

and I enjoyed the "Butternut Pumpkin & Pinenut Tart with roasted tomato and High Valley Feta" $16.50

We then headed out to "Lowe Family Wine Company" to see their vineyards, winery and taste their organic wines at the Cellar door. this was a particularly pretty cellar door and accompanying herb & vegetable gardens.

Here I tried a lovely 2005 Merlot, which I plan to add to the wines served in my janeCOOKS Cooking Classes.

A ten minute drive up the road we arrived at "Botobolar Vineyard" one of Australia's first organic wineries, they have been growing grapes organically and producing organic wines for more than thirty years.

Organic wine production, not only needs to meet the Australian Certified standards for growing and producing organic foods, making them both chemical and pesticide free, but they also must adhere to the much lower levels of preservatives recommended to be added to their wines.
Both Lowe and Botobolar have recently produced some excellent organic preservative free wines as well.
If you enjoy a nice glass of wine, in moderation of course and have never considered the extra benefits to your health, by consuming both organic and also organic preservative free wines, give them a try. If you buy direct from the websites and mention you heard of them from janeCOOKS, you may even get yourself a discount.
Following our visit out to these two cellar doors, we headed back into town for afternoon tea. We went to the "Mudgee Brewing Co".

Since Paul is not that interested in wine, we stopped in here so he could try a locally brewed beer, and although they were out of stock of their ginger beer, he ordered a Wheat beer and I had a Pale Ale, they were fragrant and refreshing, at the same time the kids enjoyed some freshly baked scones with jam and cream!

There is also a restaurant open for dinner and live bands play regularly at the Melting Pot on site!
It was a lovely end to our day in Mudgee, Tom our Learner drove us back to Rylstone. Paul was in the passenger seat, as supervising instructor and me in the back seats with the kids, enjoying the sunset over the countryside, for our forty minute journey back to the farm. All was suddenly a little less idyllic, when Tom noticed the petrol light come on, 12klms out of the middle of nowhere!!! Needless to say we were all glad to see and roll into, the BP fuel station in Rylstone's main Street as darkness fell.

Thistle Hill & Erudgere Winery
74 McDonalds Road, Mudgee NSW 2850 Cellar Door Ph (02)63733400
Lowe Family Wine Company
Tinja Lane, Mudgeee NSW 2850 Cellar Door Ph (02)6372 0800
Botobolar Vineyard
89 Botobolar Road, Mudgee NSW 2850 Cellar Door (02)6373 3840
High Valley Wine & Cheese Co.137 Cassilis Road, Mudgee NSW 2850 Ph (02)6372 1011
Mudgee Brewing Co4 Church Street, Mudgee NSW 2850 Ph (02)6372 6726

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