Friday, February 24, 2012

Margaret River Wine Region

We spent a day touring some wineries in the Margaret River region of Western Australia. For this blog post, I'll take you along on our tour, complete with my pictures of each place. The picture to the right is obviously of some grapes at one of the wineries. It was nice to tour wineries when there was actually something on the vines, as I toured the Yarra Valley region in autumn when the vines were withered and bare!

Our first stop was Cullen Wines. They are known for their organic vineyard and biodynamic agricultural processes. After our wine tasting, we had some bread with delicious dips and olive oil. This was a cute little place with great wine and food; it ended up being one of our favorites of the day.

Next we headed nearby Vasse Felix. This place had several strange sculptures on its grounds. The main building was very pretty, and we enjoyed their wine as well.

I'm giving a thumbs down to the Margaret River Chocolate Company. Their "tastings" consisted of picking out a few of what were basically chocolate chips from a bowl. They had white chocolate and dark chocolate, but no milk chocolate was out on the day we were there. Also, they usually have chocolatiers you can watch making treats, but there were none of those working on this day. Highly disappointing (though my mouth is full of white chocolate chips in the picture!).
We were now in the heart of the Margaret River area, and we headed to Cape Mentelle. By this point, I guess the wine and chocolate had made Zack tired, because he took a nap in the car for a little while before we went inside. I didn't mind; I read a book on the swing and enjoyed the quiet winery.

Our next stop was the extremely impressive Voyager Estate. The grounds of this place were amazing! If you think Domaine Chandon in the Yarra Valley region is pretty, it's got nothing on this place.
This place has the second largest Australian flag in the country (the biggest is in Canberra). The grounds are flawless with perfectly manicured hedges and expansive green lawns.

Here's a picture of me ringing the bell out front. It was quite loud, so this shot shows me running away!

We enjoyed walking around the rose gardens and choosing our favorite (this was mine). There were also rose bushes at the end of each row of vines. This was definitely our other favorite winery for the day.

We tried to go to Leeuwin Estate, but they hold a yearly concert which happened to fall on the weekend we were there, so the line of cars to even get on the grounds was insane. We decided to skip it and instead headed to the Margaret River Cheese Company before it closed. After a delicious tasting, we purchased a bag containing crackers and little portions of some of their cheeses. This made for a great snack over the next few days-I love cheese!

The Margaret River wine region was beautiful, and touring it was a relaxing and delicious way to spend a day in Western Australia.

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