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Wine Weekend Captures the Best of Tasmania’s East Coast

July 9, 2019 Travel Packages No Comments
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The annual Great Eastern Wine Weekend returns for its fifth year from 6-8 September 2019, showcasing the best food and wines of Tasmania’s east coast.

The event offers an opportunity to explore Tasmania’s east coast wine region through a variety of special events, cellar door specials, lazy brunches hopping between vineyards, communal yoga, cheese and sparkling events and a cruise to Wineglass Bay.

“Freycinet Lodge is again thrilled to be an integral part of this year’s Great Eastern Wine Weekend, which is an excellent showcase of local produce and wines,” Destinations Chief Operating Officer Andrew Paynter said.

“At the Lodge, we use local producers wherever possible, and it is great to see an event such as this bringing them together to celebrate the best of the east coast.

“Each year the event has grown from strength to strength, including winning the Event of the Year award at the recent East Coast Regional Tourism Awards (known as the Great Eastern Drivers).

“We look forward to hosting locals, Tasmanians and visitors at this outstanding event.”

Program details to date:

Meet the Maker | Freycinet Lodge | Fri 6 Sep 5-7pm | Free

Start the weekend right with tastings from the hand of our local makers. From 5pm, winemakers from across the east coast region will gather at the Lodge for complimentary tastings, wine sales and good conversation at the Freycinet Lodge Hazards Bar and Lounge. This is your chance to tuck a bottle of Pinot under your wing for later. Enjoy Melshell Oysters freshly shucked from their farm at Dolphin Sands, or share a platter of locally made cheeses from Hazards Bar and Lounge, to the tunes of much loved local musician Luke Parry. This event is open to the public with no booking required. Tastings are free – just pay as you go for glasses or bottles along your east coast wine sipping journey.

Farm Tour and Oyster Tasting | Freycinet Marine Farm | Fri 6 Sep 2-4pm | $150pp

A farm visit normally conjures thoughts of cows and muddy shoes. Not at Freycinet Marine Farm. Head down to their farm and they’ll serve up freshly shucked oysters as you stand in the waters in which they grow. What’s more, they’ll insist on pairing said oysters with a cool climate sparkling. Learn about how they harvest oysters and mussels and what’s involved in the growing, grading and delivery process. The experience includes a live oyster display from juvenile to fully grown oysters along with half a dozen freshly shucked oysters. How do we make this offer even more indulgent for the wine weekend? Add fresh steamed mussels from the farm. Naturally, these are served with sparkling from Freycinet Vineyard.

Sunset Cruise with Gala Estate Vineyard | Wineglass Bay Cruises | Fri 6 Sep 4.30-6.30pm | $85pp

From the Coles Bay jetty, step aboard the Schouten Passage II, which is a perfect floating venue to watch the sun sink below the horizon at Great Oyster Bay. Cheers to the weekend with a glass of local bubbles and head to the Sky Lounge where you will be greeted by host and vineyard owner, Adam Greenhill from the award-winning Gala Estate Vineyard. Adam will share stories about his long family history in the region and wine tastings from the vineyard. There will be light canapés to complement live music from a local east coast cover band. As the sun sets, the team at Wineglass Bay Cruises will navigate you back to shore, disembarking just in time for the Meet the Maker event and even more free wine tastings! Your evening will be filled to the brim with excellent wines, good food and enjoyable company.

Yoga, Bubbles and Cheese – Yes Please! | White Sands Estate | Fri 6 Sep 5-7pm | $45pp

Dedicate Friday evening to all things pleasurable. Don the yoga pants, lay down the mat, pop open a bottle of bubbly and sniff out the cheese – we all know this combo rocks! A yoga flow complemented with a light tasting is a refreshing healthy indulgence and a relaxing way to begin the weekend of festivities. Join local yoga teacher, Krystal Yamamoto on the deck and overlooking the blue waters, set in for a one hour yoga flow that focuses on nurturing to prioritise compassion towards self and others – allowing time for stillness and reflecting within. Afterwards, come together to smell, sip and nibble tastings from Iron House Brewery and local cheese farms. And the best part you can do the whole thing in your yoga pants! BYO yoga mat.

Wine Tastings | The Farm Shed East Coast Wine Centre | 10am-4pm daily | $8-$12pp

The Farm Shed East Coast Wine Centre is a one-stop shop to learn about, taste and purchase an extensive variety of east coast wines. The centre shows off the magnificent vineyards of the region and incorporates wine tastings and sales from all twenty of the local vineyards. You can also find Tasmanian whisky and gin and a retail gallery full of Tasmanian art.

Across the weekend the farm shed will be offering wine tastings from local vineyards who do not have a cellar door. This unique wine tasting experience is $8 for five tastings (one standard drink) or $12 for 10 tastings (two standard drinks).

Wines on offer include: Hurly Burly Gewurtztraminer, Boomer Creek Riesling, Lisdillon Sauvignon Blanc, MacLean Bay Pinot Rose, Kelvedon Chardonnay, Sterling Heights Gamay Noir, Overtime Pinot Noir, Apsley Gorge Pinot Noir, Over The Edge Petit Verdot and The Bend Cabernet Sauvignon.

Pizza, Wine and Cheese | Overtime Vineyard | Available Sat 7 and Sun 8 10am-4pm 

Nestled on the banks above Bicheno you will find a small family owned and operated boutique vineyard growing over 750 Pinot Noir Vines. With expansive views across green-tipped vines and stunning blue ocean waters, you will be firmly reminded you are in wine country. The newly opened cellar door and grassy lawns offers a picture perfect setting to bring along a picnic rug and enjoy free wine tastings, homemade pizzas and Tasmanian cheese platters starring the best the region has to offer. What a better way to enjoy a meal than sprawled out on a picnic blanket or table, sharing delicious wine and food with loved ones and taking in the stunning ocean views. The best part? You do not even have to pack any food, the team at Overtime Vineyard have that covered!

Wine and Cheese at the Cellar Door | Priory Ridge Wines | Sat 7 and Sun 8 11am-4pm 

Begin your wine journey at the northern end of the Great Eastern Drive and explore the grounds of a boutique 6 hectare vineyard on the banks of the George River. Priory Ridge cellar door is a charming adapted 1920s shearing shed with memorabilia of yesteryear pasted on from ancestors adorning the walls. Take a step back in time and come to know the region and its history as you sample a variety of exquisite wines, paired with cheeses made by 13th generation cheese makers, Bay of Fires Cheese. After sampling the local fare, you can bet you are going to want a little more… Fortunately, platters featuring Fowlers Bay of Fires Cheese and Priory Ridge quince paste will be available to purchase with wine and enjoy at picnic tables. You can sit back, relax and take in the vista of a tranquil farming valley.

Yogaccino | Swims East Coast Coffee | Sat 7 Sep 9.30-11am | $35pp

The grassy lawn of Swims East Coast Coffee is a serene platform for a gentle flow yoga class – and surf check! With the Scamander river-mouth front and centre, you’ll find yourself mesmerised by the view of bold rolling waves curling over and breaking into golden sand. Your resident yoga teacher Krystal Yamamoto will gradually shift your attention inward and guide you through a one hour spring morning yoga class. The sun will help to heat the body and the sound of those ocean waves rolling in will encourage connection with place as you flow through breath and movement. After the class throw down a cushion, sip, nibble and chat amongst fellow yogis and coffee lovers. Swims will be serving up delicious coffee and homemade cake using local produce.

Bubbles & Brunch Masterclass with Curly Haslam-Coates | Richardsons Beach | Sat 7 Sep 10-11.30 am | $85pp

Curly Haslam-Coates, celebrated wine judge and educator, joins the Great Eastern Wine Weekend to host the Bubbles & Brunch Masterclass. Celebrating sparkling wines from around the world, Curly will guide you through six different styles of international sparkling wines, learning about the unique qualities that makes each one so special and savour the difference between them and our award winning east coast Tasmanian sparkling wines.  An outdoor event set on the picturesque white sands of Richardsons Beach, this masterclass includes grazing platters for brunch, showcasing locally sourced ingredients designed to complement the variety of sparkling wines on offer. 2019 brought Curly the accolade of being the only nominee in the southern hemisphere for the IWSC International Wine & Spirit Competition’s International Wine Communicator and with spaces for this intimate experience limited, it is anticipated to fill quickly.

Wild Abundance & Fire | Twamley Farm | Sat 7 Sep 10am-3pm | $200pp

It’s time to turn up the heat with Wild Abundance & Fire – a cooking class and three-course feast designed to teach how to cook local game over fire and coals. In the surrounds of gorgeous Twamley Farm there will be much merriment and wine as part of this slow cooking experience with Gert from Gert & Ted Gourmet Catering. Prepare to celebrate the abundance of Tassie’s bounty, cooking outdoors in the tradition of pagan festival Ostara which honours spring’s arrival. Darlington and Boomer Creek Vineyards will be there to share stories and ensure wines are matched to perfection with local venison, rainbow trout, partridge and pheasant in Twamley’s Stone Room.

Discover Freycinet Vineyard with Claudio Radenti | Freycinet Vineyard | Sat 7 Sep 2-4pm | $50pp

It’s not often one can spend time with a renowned winemaker and vineyard owner on an estate where every drop is grown, produced and bottled on site. Join Claudio Radenti on the gentle slopes of Freycinet Vineyard, overlooking the peninsula. This sheltered valley offers the ideal climate for elegant yet powerful wines. Let Claudio guide you across the estate as he points out near 40-year-old vines that have gone on to win national awards and redefine Tasmania’s position as a premier producer of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Riesling and Sparkling wines.

Unwind In The Vines V3 | Craigie Knowe | Sat 7 Sep 12 – 4pm | Free

Join Craigie Knowe Vineyard for Unwind In The Vines V3, The Great Eastern Wine Weekend Edition. It is the perfect chance to gather some good friends and settle in for a relaxed afternoon, surrounded by vines planted in 1979. It is the oldest vineyard on the east coast and this is your chance to enjoy the latest wines in the Craigie family. Unwind with great live music from local musician, Luke Parry and graze on flavoursome food from local food vans, The Tuscan Oven or The Dennison Grove. If wine is not your drink of choice, enjoy a cold beer by Malting Lagoon Brewery. Mark’s famous Creamy Irish Ale will be flowing all afternoon. There is plenty of space, but seats are limited, so grab a chair, bean bag or picnic rug and enjoy a lazy afternoon in a truly perfect setting to enjoy a glass (or bottle) of wine.

No bookings required.

The Great Eastern Wine and Dine Dinner | Freycinet Lodge | Sat 7 Sep 5-11pm | $160pp

Raise your glass and toast to the coast! As the signature event of the weekend, this five course sunset feast overlooking Great Oyster Bay is not to be missed. Hosted by acclaimed Freycinet Vineyard winemaker Claudio Radenti, and for the first time, Curly Haslam-Coates, who will share her wealth of knowledge from over two decades of experience in the wine industry. The evening begins with freshly shucked oysters and east coast bubbles on the deck. Generous canapes will flow throughout the deck and lounge area before guests are seated for the remaining courses, with two matched wines per course. Roasting BBQ suckling pig, marinated BBQ Cape Grim steak and free-range chicken will await in a glowing fire pit on the deck. Share your table with local wine makers who will offer stories about winemaking on the east coast. Expect your glass to be full, platters piled high with regional fare, a delicately plated dessert, and shared cheese platters. The evening will be topped off with live music by local band, The Pretty Things.

Winemaker’s Dinner by the Bay | Furneaux Restaurant | Sat 7 Sep 6.30pm | $160pp

Furneaux Restaurant with Priory Ridge Wines and Bay of Fires Cheese come together to present ‘A Wine Maker’s Dinner by the Bay.’ The seven course degustation is all about sharing the love of food and wine, stories and bringing people together. Meet the makers behind some of the region’s greatest fare and enjoy pairing their wine and cheese with each course. The French/modern Australian cuisine draws on international influences using fresh locally sourced ingredients, designed to complement the wine and cheese – the perfect wine food. With such passion and love for great food and wine, the trio are dedicated to bringing the region to life by sharing their incredible award-winning produce and connecting through dishes inspired by the region. Spaces for this exquisite dinner are limited and are anticipated to fill quickly.

Bubbles and Bivalves and Smooth Tunes | Devil’s Corner Cellar Door | Sun 8 Sep 12-4pm | $26.00

Devil’s Corner and Freycinet Marine Farm present Bubbles and Bivalves. Order your fresh oysters and a glass of devilish bubbles for this Great Eastern Wine Weekend special, find a spot on the grass and settle into the finish the weekend with a relaxing afternoon of live music.

Pinot Noir Vertical Tasting | Milton Vineyard | Sun 8 Sep 1-2.30pm 

Do you love Pinot Noir? Would you like to get more familiar with this varietal? Pinot Noir is the star of this show. A very rare opportunity has arisen to join the Dunbabin family at Milton Vineyard to a journey through five vintages, exploring the ageing and maturing of the treasured Pinot Noir at Milton. It is an occasion to explore this exquisite varietal, starting with a young vintage and tasting your way through older vintages, observing variances of each growing season. What factors were at play over the years? How does aging affect taste? These questions and more will be answered as you sip your way through 12 years of east coast vintage history. To complement the flavours and textures of the wine, a light lunch will be served completing your immersive Milton Vineyard experience.

Yoga, Bubbles and Cheese, Yes Please! | The Social | Sun 8 Sep 4-6pm | $40pp

There is no better way to end the weekend than with yoga, bubbles and cheese! Come along to your local, The Social, a place where you can disconnect to reconnect in the heart of St. Helens. Resident yoga teacher Krystal Yamamoto will share her love of yoga during a gentle one hour flow yoga class which is suitable for all levels. Afterwards The Social will play host to a bubbles and cheese tasting from local farms and wine makers. As you smell, sip and nibble your focus moves mindfully to the flavours and finding the perfect words to describe how satisfied the taste buds are. The best part, you can do the whole thing in your yoga pants! BYO yoga mat.

Cellar Doors Stops | Various Locations | All weekend

Here on the east coast we encourage you to ‘just stop.’ There’s no better time to stop in at vineyards along the Great Eastern Drive than this weekend. Cellar doors welcome with special offers exclusive to the Great Eastern Wine Weekend. Make the most of this across vineyards as varied as their flavour profiles. From petite family-owned estates to alfresco dining with sweeping peninsula views, you’re only problem will be moving on to the next stop. It won’t just be the promise of your next wine tasting that prompts a pause – the beaches and azure coastline are something else.

Wineglass Bay Cruises | Available all weekend | 20% Discount

Great wine in Wineglass Bay. What could be more fitting? From the Freycinet Lodge jetty, step aboard Schouten Passage II for an unforgettable four-hour cruise. Let the experienced and friendly crew guide you through the sights and history of the Freycinet Peninsula; taking you from the gentle shores of Coles Bay, to one of the world’s most beautiful beaches. Stop for  lunch at Wineglass Bay and enjoy locally sourced fresh produce. Between wine tastings and a lunch of local fare, don’t forget to keep an eye out for migrating whales.

Freycinet Paddle Tour | Freycinet Adventures | Available all weekend | $10 Discount pp 

Experience a relaxed three hour guided kayak tour of the Freycinet coastline with Freycinet Adventures. You’ll glide beneath the granite Hazards Mountain range, past pristine sandy beaches and across waters that are crystal clear. Weave along stunning coastline and have up close encounters with the rich wildlife. Take time out on a secluded beach and discover Freycinet’s rich stories from your guides as you relax with freshly brewed coffee and tasty snacks.

Special offer for the Great Eastern Wine Weekend: $95 per adult and $85 per child.

Paintball Packages | Freycinet Paintball | Available all weekend| 15% off all packages

Are you looking for an exhilarating, adrenalin-fuelled experience in a safe and natural environment? Choose Freycinet Paintball to get the heart pumping! This adventurer’s playground offers 6.5 acres of playing fields consisting of realistic structures and props to set the ultimate combat scene. You can take your pick between the open fields if you’re fearless or seek solace in a bunker, trench or fort. Freycinet Paintball offers three packages all of which are available across the weekend at the special discounted rate.

ATV Tours | ALL4Adventure | Available all weekend | 15% off all tours

Enjoy the adventure of riding your own quad bike to remote areas of Freycinet National Park. Choose from a two hour quad bike adventure or spend half the day winding your way through eucalypt covered hills and boulder strewn valleys. Explore the sea cliffs and beauty of Cape Tourville and Friendly Beaches on a day of discovery and adventure.

Accommodation packages at Freycinet Lodge are available, with discounts for auto club members.

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