Back in Coal River again (Enjoying Tassie’s Finest)

A few weeks ago L and I flew to Tassie to visit my bestie and her family. After a delicious breakfast at Ginger Brown, we all packed into their car and hit the road to Richmond. I’m one of those lucky people who are or used to be able to call Tasmania home. During my one and a half years in Hobart I had been to Richmond many, many times. 

Richmond is a picture-perfect town with a very old bridge (the oldest bridge in Australia that is still open to traffic), some ducks and an old-fashioned lolly shop.After stopping at the farmer’s market and stocking up on some fresh produce for the night’s dinner we went to our first winery. The plan was to do a winery tour of the coal valley. I can’t believe that in all those years I have been living or regularly visiting Tassie, I’ve never done that before! 

First up was Pooley’s which is located in a beautiful old sandstone building on a little hill just outside Richmond. The wine tasting was held in an old stable. My bestie’s favourite has always been the Pooley’s Pinot Gris and it didn’t disappoint. L and I especially like the Butcher’s Hill Pinot Noir. The two bottles we bought were the first of many that day. During the summer you can bring a picnic and let your kids run wild in the open shed and garden overlooking Richmond. 

Pooley Wines 
1431 Richmond Road 
Richmond TAS 7025 
Cellar Door open 7 days 

Only a few kilometres down the road was Wicked Cheese. Cheese and wine are a match made in heaven, so we stopped to have a look. Best. Decision. Ever. When you enter the big room, to the left you can see two cheese rooms, where the cheeses are maturing.

The owner of Wicked Cheese, Ashley McCoy, was offering us different cheeses to taste. He has a degree in Dairy Technology and used to be the head cheese-maker at King Island Dairy, so he knows what he is talking about. His cheeses were beautiful!

My favourites were the ‘Wicked Smoked Brie’ and the ‘Wicked Triple Cream Brie’, L loved the ‘Wicked Chilli Camembert’ and the ‘Wicked Nanny Goat Blue Cheese’. I loved smoked cheeses but had never tried a smoked brie before, the smoky flavour was perfect combined with the creamy texture.

The chilli camembert had a good dose of chilli in it, but even for someone like me who can’t eat super spicy it was delicious! While tasting their different cheese, Ashleigh explained to us the art of cheese-making and we were even allowed to take a peak inside the room where bries were at different stages of evolving their flavours and that typical white mould on the outside.

If you are in the area, you should definitely head to Wicked Cheese, we couldn’t help ourselves but buy a few different kinds of cheese.

 
Wicked Cheese 
1238 Richmond Rd 
Richmond TAS 7025 

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Further along Richmond Road is the adoringly named Puddleduck Vinery. They have recently renovated and expanded. The cellar door is housed in a beautiful space overlooking their vineyard and lake. (And the lake obviously has ducks on it!).

My bestie and her husband especially loved Puddleduck as they have a new kids play area outside (and a fence around the lake of course), so we were inside, enjoying our wine tasting, while the kids were running wild outside. They offer a cheese platter to go with the wine tasting or you can bring your food and have a picnic outside. I think when we are back in summer, we will definitely come back and enjoy a picnic.

I loved their wines, especially the Lucky Duck Pinot Noir, which has been named after ‘Lucky’ the resident pet duck and the Puddleduck Bubbleduck. The Bubbleduck is a pretty dry sparkling, that reminded me of the sparklings you get in Germany. 

Puddleduck Vineyard 
992 Richmond Road 
Richmond TAS 7025
(03) 62 602301 
Open daily from 10am-5pm
 
Last stop for the day was Frogmore Creek. The big open wine cellar/ restaurant is sitting on the top of a hill, surrounded by vines. The colours at this time of year are just gorgeous, the vineyards are dramatic orange and red colours and just look beautiful. To me this is the ultimate autumn feeling. 

While we were tasting the wines, the kids had a look upstairs at the gallery. Unfortunately we didn’t have time to eat but sitting there, overlooking the Coal River Valley sounds fabulous.

I love Frogmore’s Riesling and after we had packed the last bottles into the car we headed home to fire up the pizza oven and open a bottle of wine to go with our cheese before dinner. Bliss!

Frogmore Creek 

699 Richmond Road 
Cambridge TAS 7170 
(03) 6274 5844 
Open daily from 10am-5pm 

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I can’t believe I have never done a winery tour in the Coal River Valley before. The wines were delicious and the cheese so tasty that most of it was gone the same day. We will definitely head back here for a picnic in the summer. Grabbing some cheeses and nibbles and relax at a picnic at the Puddleduck garden with a bottle of their finest. Can’t wait! 

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