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The weekend that will have you falling in love with Canberra wine

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No weekend plans? Visit Canberra’s two-day vino-focused itinerary should do the trick…

Canberra’s award-winning cool climate wine district is easy to get to—with the Murrumbateman and Lake George wineries just over half an hour’s drive from Canberra.

Spend the first day exploring the boutique cellar doors of Murrumbateman, then the second day soaking up all that Lake George has to offer.

Day 1: Murrumbateman

Photo: via Facebook.

Start your day with a hot brew and crunchy granola from The Cupping Room in Canberra’s city. Then drive half an hour to Brindabella Hills Winery for stunning views of this renowned cool climate wine region.

There is a steep drop to the Murrumbidgee River 100 metres below, which is what provides this vineyard with drainage and frost protection. Be sure to taste a spicy Sangiovese or savour the crisp citrus notes of the Marsanne.

Drive about 25 minutes to Poachers Pantry for lunch in their Smokehouse Restaurant—whether you’re a carnivore or vegetarian, you can enjoy three courses for $69, with an optional wine pairing for $29.

Still hankering for something sweet? Continue along Nanima Road to discover local, decadent handcrafted chocolates from Robyn Rowe Chocolates.

Four Winds. Image via Facebook.

A few minutes’ drive towards Murrumbateman, you’ll find Four Winds Vineyard. This is a beautiful place to relax and soak in the rays—and the ultimate combination of wine tasting and wood-fired pizzas!

Can’t squeeze in pizza? You can always build a fancy platter from their handy deli fridge or just chill in the undercover outdoor seating area, or bring your hat and picnic blanket to sit right next to the vines. Try their cool 2019 Sangiovese Rosé.

For a continuation of the vino theme, drop into The Vintner’s Daughter for a wine tasting of their small-batch drops, including Pinot Noir and Riesling. Say hi to the goats.

Head 30 minutes’ drive back into Canberra to stay within the melting pot of design, culture, food and fashion at Midnight Hotel on Northbourne Avenue—only a stroll to the hustle of Braddon.

Braddon Merchant is blonde-wood filled European-style deli and eatery. Photo: Ryan Linnegar.

Day 2: Canberra and Lake George

The Braddon Merchant is a sunny and sophisticated place to relish a hearty breakfast. Then wander into Braddon for a recharging coffee from the Lonsdale St Cafe. Browse the boutiques and pop-up stores for an hour or so.

Head around the corner to BentSpoke Brew Pub where you will find 18 varieties of beer and cider, all brewed on-site. You can watch the brew team at work—and if it’s not too early for you, sample a selection of brews by the pint.

BentSpoke. Photo: Rohan Thomson.

Drive out of Canberra along the Federal Highway to Lake George Winery, where you can taste their fine wines and enjoy a long lunch or share a Charcuterie board in the welcoming Westering Restaurant.

Keep an eye out for the cute little house called Little George—a great option for your next stay. It’s the picture-perfect place to unwind and explore 300 acres of nature (with a bottle of red, of course).

Now head up the road to the modest town of Collector—with its fresh produce, art gallery and pub. A must-do is a visit to Collector Wines (feature image)—they’re open Thursday to Monday—where you can enjoy emerging varieties by the fire in winter or outside in the garden in summer.

Be sure to pop next door for a coffee from Some Café.

Some Cafe, Collector. Image: Tim Bean Photography.

Feature image: Collector Wines. Credit: Sammy Hawker

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