Puddleduck winery near Richmond in Southern Tasmania has a problem that many wineries would love to have. They don’t sell through retail stores and sell out of many of their bottles before the next vintage has been released. Quite a problem to have, for sure and one that means a visit to the cellar door is an absolute must if you are visiting Hobart.
For a small fee ($15 per head or $25 per head with cheese and “quackers” – highly recommended!) you can have a personal walkthrough of the wine list with a member of the winery team. This is recommended very highly for a few reasons – the staff there really know the wine they are selling, the tasting uses the proper glassware for each different wine (which was really unusual and impressive to see – if you have never tasted Pinot Noir from a glass made especially for the purpose you have missed out – and finally, the cellar door gets so crowded at times that your own table where you can taste at your leisure means the experience remains a positive one throughout.
What we liked: almost everything. The Chardonnays have been oaked to perfection without being overdone and have the nutty aftertaste that defines wines made in this way. The Pinot Noir has been made from good clones (114 and 115) to produce wine of great colour and finesse while the Riesling offerings are both off-dry and medium-sweet to demonstrate the versatility of this grape in production.
What we didn’t like so much: the prices. Make no mistake, Puddleduck have priced their wines properly and manage to sell everything they put into a bottle, which means the product is in the right market at the right price. We just found that we were comparing their wines to others tasted elsewhere and felt the value for money was better elsewhere.
Such is Tasmanian wine though, excellent but expensive.