Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Celebrate Father's Day @ Primavera's Musical Feast

The first weekend of the Granite Belt Primavera Festival 2011 is all about musical tunes from blues, to jazz, country and rock n roll. It's the perfect way to spend Father's Day!

Rock your socks off at Lucas Estate's annual Rock N Roll in the Vineyard, Sunday 4 September. Tickets include a commemorative glass filled with Lucas Estate's fantastic wine - a perfect present for Dad.

The tranquil surrounds of Bungawarra Winery are set for a shake up when young Brisbane blues act Rumblefish head up stream to the Granite Belt for Blues@Bungawarra. The band will be kicking off Saturday at 2pm. So come along and bring a picnic lunch.

Join the Singing Lake Cafe at Robert Channon Wines on Father's Day for a delightful day of jazzy croons and tunes from Aperitif Jazz ensemble with Teri Welles. Enjoy the sultry sounds while sipping one of Australia's best Verdelho's overlooking the winery's stunning lake.

Experience a weekend of country music at the annual Stanthorpe Country Music Stampede. Get down to wake-up and professional artists including Chad Morgan, Sharon Benjamin, Gary Fogarty, Reg Poole and Rod Williams. Teenages - sign up for the Teenage country idol competition.

So grab the family (don't forget Dad!) and head up the mountain for a truly special weekend.

And, of course, make sure you indulge in our award winning wine and food, offering numerous options for Father's Day breakfast, lunch or dinner.

For more information on each event check out

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The tranquil surrounds of Bungawarra Winery are set for a shake up on Saturday 3 September. Young Brisbane blues act Rumblefish will be leaving their familiar waters and heading up stream to the Granite Belt alps, for the Primavera Festival Blue@Bungawarra.

Rumblefish approach blues from a unique vantage point, born from 4 years spent backing the unconventional blues legend Blind Dog Donnie.

As vocalist/guitarist James Pryce-Davies puts it, “We try to stay away from the mid tempo shuffles and other 'classics' which are the standard fare for many pub blues bands.”

The band instead focuses on serving up a feisty brew which pushes blues to its outer limits, incorporating most of the major musical styles of the last 50 years.

Though a young band there is a lot of experience with the guys having played everywhere from bikie halls, indian restaurants, all manner of pubs and festivals such as Woodford Folk Festival, Sunshine Coast Blues Festival and West End Carnivale.

Whilst Brisbane based the band are not strangers to the Granite Belt or it's famous wineries.

“I've spent a lot of time visiting family and friends up in Stanthorpe. I'm really excited to be able to show them what the band can do,” says drummer, Alex Smith.

The band will be kicking off at 2pm with things wrapping up at 5pm. So come along, bring a picnic lunch and enjoy it in the beautiful scenery of the Bungawarra Winery. Weather won't be a problem with both indoor and outdoor venues available.

For more information visit


Privamera is only 10 days away and to celebrate we are offering you the chance to win two tickets to one of our first events - Lucas Estate's famous Rock N Roll in the Vineyard, Sunday 4 September.

Simple LIKE our new Granite Belt Wine Country facebook page and leave us a message!

Monday, August 22, 2011

How to be Rugged and Romantic

Tiana Templeman, writing for Travel Ninemsn, has tackled the debate of why most romantic packages are aimed at women. Can a man be romantic and rugged at the same time?  The answer is definitely yes, if you follow her top travel tips.

Her number 7 recommendation to Australian men is to become a Winemaker for the Weekend in the Granite Belt.

"Modern wine production isn't voodoo practiced in dark, musty cellars hidden from the public eye", chuckles winemaker Peter Orr. 

Especially not at the Queensland College of Wine Tourism which runs an interactive Winemaker for the Weekend course at its flash $9 million training facility in Stanthorpe. If rambling through picturesque on-site vineyards, enjoying terrific food and wine and learning about all things vinous sounds like fun then this course is for you. Participants get to try their hands at everything from picking to pressing and are also treated to a private Masterclass with a much-awarded local winemaker. The two day program includes training, meals, wine and — perhaps most importantly — bus transfers to and from your accommodation so there's no need to drive.

Hot tip: 31 the rocks offers suitably 'manly' accommodation — bright and modern without a doily in sight.

So if you are after a holiday the both of you will actually enjoy, venture to the Granite Belt.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Granite Belt wineries are coming to Toowoomba

It's official - for the first time we are going on the road! Who doesn't like a bus trip especially when there is wine tasting at the end of it?

Toowoomba residents can experience elevated taste next month when more than 18 Granite Belt wineries host a wine tasting road show event at the Empire Theatre, 26 October.

The event will provide consumers and trade with the opportunity to taste more than 90 boutique wines (yes, 90!) and meet our fantastic winemakers who are carving out an impressive reputation for the Granite Belt.

We are fast becoming one of Australia’s premium wine regions, combining much-sought after granite terroir, cool climate and high altitude to create national and international award winning wines.

Granite Belt Wine and Tourism’s Wine Chair Jim Barnes said “Feedback from the industry and consumers indicates that they want to learn more about Granite Belt wines.

“We would like everyone to take the time to visit the region but we know that isn’t always possible, so we are coming to them.

“Elevate your taste buds and have a great night out with friends with 18 exceptional wineries in one venue - you will not be disappointed!”

This exclusive event will be held Empire Church Theatre between 6pm-8pm. Tickets are only$25 and include wine tasting, a complimentary wine tasting glass and canap├ęs. Buy your tickets online NOW.

Trade and media are invited to a preview showing between 2.30pm-4pm.

For more information visit

Granite Belt a Courier Mail Top Gourmet Getaway

Natascha Mirosch, Food Editor of the Courier Mail names the Granite Belt as a Top Gourmet Getaway.

Want to get away from the city but not necessarily forgo the comforts of home and hearth? Within a three-hour radius of Queensland's capital are some pretty special places with something to offer both your sanity and your stomach.

The focus is naturally on wine in Queensland's best known grape region. Designate a driver or join a tour of some of the many cellar doors in the area. There are plenty of casual places to eat. Some wineries have eateries attached, such as the Barrel Room Cafe, Vineyard Cafe and Shiraz at Ballandean.

Sutton's is the place to gather bags of granny smiths, pink ladies and more in season. Pick up some cheese at Karen Deeth's Granite Belt Dairy, olives from Stirling Olives, and handmade chocolate at Heavenly Chocolates. Accommodation is mainly self-contained or B&B style.

To read more about Natascha's recommendations visit the Life section of The Courier Mail.

Thursday, August 18, 2011


Lovers of food, wine, culture and nature...get ready to indulge the senses at the 2011 Primavera Festival.

Granite Belt Wine Country lives life by the seasons. Steeped in European heritage we have celebrated Primavera (Italian for spring) for generations. Meet the winemakers, providores and artisans of the Granite Belt; and experience three months of festivities, from September to November.

Primavera offers more than 55 cultural and gastronomic events, and new wine vintage releases. It is also a visual feast of apple blossoms and wildflowers. From decadent seven course degustations, Shiraz master classes, sultry blues and brass, extraordinary art, and wildflowers tours; Primavera will have something to enchant you.

Stay for the weekend or longer and experience elevated taste, culture and nature.

Download the Festival Program now!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Golden Grove turns more Golden

Shiraz has a love affair with granite soils so it certainly isn’t surprising that a Granite Belt winery has taken gold and top of class at one of Australia’s oldest and largest regional wine shows, the 2011 Cowra Wine Show.

At this year’s event, family owned Golden Grove Estate took acclaim with their 2009 Shiraz, produced from 40 year old vines. Winemaker, Ray Costanzo’s 2010 Sauvignon Blanc and 2011 Vermentino (a Strange Bird alternative variety) were also not far behind securing bronze. (Check out the smile on Ray's face - winners are grinners!)

It has been a very successful month for Golden Grove. At the recent 2011 Wine Wise Awards, the 2009 Shiraz was awarded a silver medal. Dedicated to alternative varieties, Golden Grove also received silver for their 2010 Mediterranean Red, and bronze for their 2011 Vermentino.

The Wine Wise Awards, now in their 22nd year, also proved a victorious show for two other Granite Belt wineries. Jester Hill in Glen Aplin, was elated with a silver medal for their 2011 Touchstone Verdelho (Strange Bird) and bronze for their 2008 Touchstone Vintner's Reserve Shiraz and 2009 Shiraz.

Mark Ravenscroft, from Ravens Croft Wines also took bronze with a citrus and melon with well integrated oak influenced 2009 Chardonnay.

Slam It Poetry Style

A verbal explosion will hit the Granite Belt this Sunday 14 August, when the Stanthorpe Regional Art Gallery plays host to the annual Australian Poetry Slam competition.

With more than $10, 000 in cash and prizes, the State Library of Queensland is encouraging all budding poets, hip hop artists and outspoken wordsmiths to pick up the microphone and let their words take flight.

Come and witness this spectacular live event, or take to the stage and speak, scream, howl, whisper or sing your original poem and let the audience be the judge.

Want to sharpen your words before you hit the stage? Join in free Slam workshops at the Stanthorpe Library - Youth 13 August, Audults on the 14 August (bookings 97 4681 2141).

For more information visit

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Beethoven and Bach with Duo Armonico

Attending concerts at a winery would have to be one of our favourite things to do. This Sunday, Robert Channon Wines presents Duo Armonico - a magical event for lovers of cello, classical guitar, and of course, wine!

Robert Channon's Swigmore Hall will come alive to the sounds of classical guitarist, Daniel Cunnington and cellist Belinda Manwaring who recently performed at the Gold Coast Arts Centre to sell-out crowds.

Their programme will feature the Vivaldi guitar concerto in D major, some beautiful Spanish pieces for guitar by Granados, duets for cello and guitar by Beethoven, Romberg, and Burgmuller, and solos for cello including Bach's suite no.3.

Tickets are only $20 (concessions available) and include a glass of wine. To get into the mood, we suggest you book the Spanish influenced pre-concert lunch. for more information visit