Mudgee

New South Wales

About

The heritage streetscape of Mudgee reflects the region’s rich history with vines and sandstone buildings amid a groomed, green landscape. The region has an exciting food and wine scene, and a viticultural history dating back to the mid-1800s. The area grows a range of styles, with cabernet sauvignon among its leading wines, as a straight varietal and also in blends with the likes of shiraz and merlot. Other key grape varieties include chardonnay and, more recently, riesling is shining.The town shares its gold rush beginnings with many other Australian wine regions, but it now attracts visitors for its cellar doors, local produce and heritage tours. Drivers can expect to arrive in this fertile valley within three and a half hours, northwest of Sydney.

Best Time to Visit Mudgee for Wine Tasting

Located on the western slopes of the Great Dividing Range, Mudgee’s climate is warm in summer and cold in winter. Spring (September to November) is a good time to visit for wine tasting since the weather is more temperate, however keep in mind that during the October school holidays there are many more tourists visiting which could make the town more crowded and accommodation harder to come by. The warmest time of year in Mudgee is in December to February, where highs are regularly around 31 degrees celsius and temperatures rarely drop below 16 degrees celsius. If you prefer to drink your chardonnay in the sun, then this may be a good time for you to visit. June to August is a fairly slow season for tourism in Mudgee, so room rates may be slightly lower. While fairly cold, with temperatures reaching lows of 0 degrees celsius, this can be a good time to enjoy Australia’s inland regions as swimming at the beach becomes much less attractive. Rug up in your favourite scarf and prepare for evenings by the fire with a nice glass of red.

Mudgee Accommodation

Mudgee has an impressive range of accommodation options, making it a suitable getaway for travelers of all persuasions. If you’re looking for a romantic country escape, a consider a unique experience in a local bed and breakfast, cottage, homestead or farmstead. Groups of friends may prefer to choose an apartment or guest house, where you can cook your own meals and entertain yourselves in your own home-away-from-home after a day of shopping for local produce and wine. Holiday parks and campsites are also an option, and the Mudgee region is now recognised as an RV-friendly area. Of course there are also a range of resorts, motels, and boutique hotels which provide the perfect base for those wanting to explore the wine and history of the region from somewhere with all the comforts you’re used to as a traveler.

Things to Do in Mudgee

As well as tasting the wine the region has to offer, be sure to visit the local distillery and brewery, and taste Mudgee’s local produce in the local cafes and restaurants. The boutique shopping district is a great place for some retail therapy or just to wander the wide, tree-lined heritage streetscapes. The Mudgee Region also plays host to regular monthly markets where you can browse for local produce, handmade breads and cheeses, olive oil, handmade textiles, arts and crafts, jewellery, clothes, and more. At night, away from the pollution and big-city lights, discover the soft diffuse of natural sky luminance and stargaze at the Mudgee Observatory, just a short drive from the town centre. The Mudgee Visitor Information Centre is a great place to find out more about anything you would like to do in the region, including where to stay and where to eat when you’re in town.

James Halliday on the History of the Mudgee Wine Region

Mudgee has its own particular history. Three German families – Roth, Kurtz and Buchholz – were instrumental in establishing vines from 1858, with the descendants of the first two carrying on viticulture for a century and keeping the tradition alive when all others had abandoned it. The next event of importance was the discovery of gold in 1872. This was nowhere near on the scale of Victoria’s gold rush but was enough to bring people and prosperity to the district until the great bank crash of 1893. Then it was the turn of the Italian-born and trained surgeon Dr Thomas Fiaschi, who not only served Australia well in war but became head of Sydney Hospital. Although his vineyard and winery continued in production until his death in 1927, and Craigmoor, founded by Adam Roth in 1858, survived until the renaissance of the 1960s, from the 1920s onwards the 55 vineyards that had existed in 1893 slowly dwindled. Even when the region’s renaissance came, it was essentially driven by a few energetic enthusiasts.Both through the circumstances of relatively small-scale winemaking and the softly beautiful and intimate nature of much of the scenery – the outer rim of hills providing a sense of security, and the smaller hills within the perimeter creating mini-vistas and valleys of their own – Mudgee has always seemed an especially friendly and welcoming place to visitors. Indeed, the Aboriginal people who lived there gave it the name Mudgee, meaning ‘nest in the hills’.It is no-frills red wine country first and foremost, with the staples of shiraz and cabernet sauvignon leading the way; merlot, too, is a long-term resident, along with three Italian varieties – sangiovese, barbera and nebbiolo.

If you live in Sydney, and want to get away from it all, Mudgee is the place to go.

Facts

Wineries 62
Tasting Notes 2262

Geographic

Latitude 32°36’S
Altitude 450–600 m
Heat Degree Days 2050
Growing Season Rainfall 360 mm
Mean January Temp 22.9°C
Harvest Late February to late March