“Deeply fascinating with overtones of enjoyment, and a long, memorable finish.”
Over 180 years young, the Hunter Valley is arguably the birthplace of Australian wine and certainly one of Australia’s most revered wine regions. But it’s no museum piece. It is a sophisticated, interesting and dynamic place with ‘real’ people characterised by a special tenacity, passion and wisdom that comes from a rich history.
The Hunter Valley produces less than 2% of Australia’s wine, yet lays claim to some of the industry’s oldest and most well-known wine making families and consistently produces an impressive, award-winning array of varieties and styles.
Whilst it is Semillon that has put the Hunter Valley on the world wine stage, the diversity and sophistication of our portfolio of wine styles and varieties is ensuring that people of all tastes can enjoy and fall in love with a Hunter Valley wine.
Hunter Valley Semillon
“Hunter Semillon is Australia’s great gift to the wine world…” - Jancis Robinson, MW
The Hunter Valley is recognised as the world’s leader in dry white wines made from Semillon. So strong is Semillon’s connection with the terroir of the Hunter Valley that the style cannot been replicated anywhere else in the world. Hunter Valley Semillon is widely regarded as Australia’s unique white wine – a style unlike all others, based on unique climatic conditions, Australian ingenuity and more than 180 years of practice.
Semillon is at its delicate best when picked early to make a wine of low alcohol. When young, it is deliciously crisp with abundant citrus aromas. With age Hunter Valley Semillon develops unique complex toast, vanilla and honey flavours, giving it depth and richness. This remarkable wine can mature and blossom for two decades and beyond and many people believe the wines are at their best around 8-10 years after vintage.
Hunter Valley Shiraz
Hunter Valley Shiraz (known as Hermitage or Burgundy until the late 1970s) has established itself as one of Australia’s great red wine styles. It is a food friendly wine of medium body that, much like Hunter Valley Semillon, reflects its origin.
Hunter Valley Shiraz wines made in the 1940s and 50s by the legendary Maurice O’Shea at McWilliams and Hector Tulloch at Tulloch are still drinking well at the turn of the 21st century and are highly sought after and widely regarded as some of the best wines ever made in Australia.
According to Australia’s pre-eminent wine writer Huon Hooke, tasting some of these old Hunter Valley reds in 2005, “Was a reminder of what great ageing wines Hunter Valley Shiraz's can be.”
Hunter Valley Chardonnay
Now, in the early years of the 21st century, Chardonnay is the world’s most popular white grape variety and the most widely planted white grape variety in Australia.
It was not until the 1960s that it appeared in the Hunter Valley as White Pineau in the Penfold’s HVD vineyard (next to Tyrrell’s), where Murray Tyrrell famously jumped the fence a few years later and borrowed some of the prunings for propagation. These were to become the Tyrrell’s Vat 47 Pinot Chardonnay wines of the early 1970s and most believe these wines were the first varietally labelled Chardonnays in Australia.
From those origins the story of modern Australian Chardonnay really begins. Nowadays, Chardonnay in the Hunter Valley is a white variety of great importance with several producers making some of Australia’s finest styles.
Hunter Valley Verdelho
Due to its natural ability to withstand heat and the occasional bit of rain, Verdelho has become a natural partner to the Hunter Valley and its wines are growing in importance in the Valley. Hunter Valley Verdelho is a naturally full-bodied, fruit driven style of wine that is becoming increasingly popular with Australian wine lovers.