Destination: Coal Valley (Tasmania)

One of the many spectacular views from a cellar door in Tasmania’s Coal Valley.

Tasmania for some is one giant wine region. To other writers it is two regions: North and South. If you really want to enjoy all that Tasmania has to offer to a wine lover, you need to break it down a bit further and here we are going to look at the Coal Valley.

Getting there: You can fly to Hobart and then hire a car, or if you plan to buy a few bottles (or a lot of bottles) then take the Spirit of Tasmania from Melbourne into Devonport and then drive to Hobart (a long day trip, so you will want to find accommodation in or near Hobart). From Hobart, travel towards Richmond and you will soon find yourself passing cellar doors every few minutes. At the end of the road is the historic town of Richmond which has a beautiful bridge, popular for a picnic stop (the ducks are very bold – so keep an eye on your lunch…)

Where to stay: Hobart has a lot of good accommodation options for all budget levels and there is also accommodation available in Richmond (but harder to find, so book in advance).

The tasting room at Riversdale Estate

Cellar doors to not be missed: Riesling and Pinot Noir are the main varieties grown in this area, with many wineries having multiple examples of both at different price points. Puddleduck does a high quality, sit-down tasting for the serious wine enthusiasts, whereas Chardonnay fans should head to Riversdale Estate where, if you time your visit appropriately, they also do a themed high-tea once a month. Frogmore Creek has a wonderful Iced Riesling dessert wine which makes it worth the visit.

Correct glassware makes a huge difference. A fact not missed at Puddleduck tastings.

Something different: A small but very welcoming winery is Everyman and his dog. The dog, Archie, is a quiet but very inquisitive and friendly black Labrador who has a habit of taking a nap next to your dining table before very happily accepting any leftovers you may have. You can stay here too, in quite luxurious accommodation, but there is only one house for rent, so book in advance (a very generous daily breakfast is included).

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