Discovering new wineries

5 03 2007

The Blackwood Valley area of Western Australia has been a late bloomer as far as wineries goes, but they are rapidy on the move. I’ve heard that there are now some 20 wineries in the region, and we’ve made it our mission to visit them all and find out as much about the wines and the winemakers as we can! (For any West Aussies out there, this is reminsicent of the early days of the Margaret River region.)

To that end, we took some time out yesterday afternoon and drove out past Boyup Brook to a winery that appears to be in the middle of the wheat and sheep belt! We first had a Scotts Brook wine (2004 cabernet sauvignon) at the Bridgetown Hotel with a meal a week ago, and now were on the hunt for more. Unfortunately, they’ve sold out at the winery, and all the local outlets are also out of it (including Manjimup -yes, we went far afield looking for this superb wine!)

However, all was not lost as we got to meet one of the owners of the winery (Kerry) and spent an hour or so with her tasting their other wines (Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, cleanskin [an unwooded chardonnay], and Shiraz), talking about lifestyle changes (she and her husband are ex-teachers), and life in general. They have a lovely tasting area at their house, and with this winery being only a 30 minute drive from Bridgetown (going on the back roads) we can see us going there quite often!

We went through Boyup Brook on the way back to Bridgetown and called in to see Jenny Duncan at Chudacud winery (pron chew-da-cud). She only had a Cab Sav and a Shiraz for tasting, so we bought one of each and listened to her plans to add an eating area. We also checked out the local talent – some young emus and some gorgeous alpacas with eyes to die for! From there it was a quick 10 minute drive back to Bridgetown to open a bottle of the Scotts Brook shiraz and enjoy it with a roast pork dinner.

Picasso, an alpaca at Chudacud winery