Lark Hill Winery

10 Nov

As part of the Wine, roses and all that jazz festival last weekend, Lark Hill Winery hosted workshops on pale ale and sparkling wine making, and offered a competition on Twitter on Friday evening with five free tickets. In The Taratory was fortunate enough to win!

T1 and T2 pulled up after Oktoberfest and headed out to their beautiful winery in Bungendore – just under a half hour drive from the centre of Canberra (depending on traffic!). Chris (our Twitter friend) was very friendly, taking note of our earlier tweet that T1 was feeling a bit dusty, and providing us with very lovely flat whites while we waited for the others to arrive. We surveyed the beautiful area (which reminded T1 and Boyfriend a lot of Surveyor’s Hill, with concrete floors and light-filled floor-to-ceiling windows looking out into the vineyard) before heading out into what we can only describe as a very, very large shed.

Gorgeous restaurant

Perfect place for a wedding!

Chris first took us through the process of making ale, and we tasted a beer which reminded us all of a little of pineapple juice in looks (and some of us in taste!).

Fresh ale!

But what we were really waiting for was the sparkling wine demo. Chris explained how the process began all those years ago (with Veuve Clicquot the trailblazer), and the very labour intensive process his winery goes through now. One example he gave was ‘bumping and twisting’, where the sparklings are settled upside down at an angle, and then twice a day each one is individually bumped and turned a quarter angle to ensure that the solid bits keep moving as they form. He popped open three wines for us to see the process where the solids burst out of the bottle before the wine is ready to serve. We tried the solids which tasted a bit like an acidic sorbet. We all agreed that the sparkling shiraz was just beautiful.

The YouTube video shows Chris popping fresh sparkling wine:

Yummy sparkling

At the conclusion we went to the cellar door for some purchases, but at the same time a very large group of women arrived (we think a hen’s party?) and so, figuring we were also hungry, we headed into the restaurant for a meal. As part of the festival the menu had changed a little, so T1’s Boyfriend and T2 had the spinach and mushroom pie (with a glass of merlot and shiraz respectively), and T1 had the beef and stout pie (with a glass of pinot noir), and we all shared a cheese platter. The restaurant was very busy from the moment it opened—and even more so once the large hen’s party arrived—and the staff did seem a little flustered. However, while the pies were a little on the expensive side ($16 each) they were a hearty size and the flavours married so well. The $20 cheese platter had a generous amount of cheese which paired well with each of our wines. And, of course, the view was superb.

Three different glasses of wine

Beef and ale pie

While we left without purchasing any wines (we’d savoured our meals and glasses of wine a little too long), it’s surely just a reason to return back soon!

Date: Saturday, 3 November 2012

Attendees: T1 (+ Boyfriend) and T2

Cost: Ale and sparkling wine demo was free, $98 for the meal (including three pies, one cheese platter and three glasses of wine @ 10 each)

Worthwhile factor: Worthwhile

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3 Responses to “Lark Hill Winery”


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