Capercaillie Wine CompanyBy editor | | Category: Capercaillie Wine Company, Hunter Valley | No Comments »
With more than 100 wineries and vineyards in the Hunter Valley, each looks for a point of difference, and at Capercaillie Wine Company, the Scottish influence is something unique to the region. Coupled with the Scottish theme, it is the first winery you will see as you turn left into Lovedale Rd.
The care and attention to the winery is seen immediately upon entering the cellar door which doubles as an art gallery, some of the work created by winery owner Trish Sutherland. Trish, along with husband Alasdair, bought the 5-hectare vineyard in 1995 and built the winery. Alasdair passed away two years ago, but the fine tradition of wines has continued in his honour.
“Capercaillie” is a Gaelic name given to the black woodlands grouse, native to the pine forests of Scotland. Even the dog, Ceilidh, has a Scottish name.
One of the exciting things about Capercaillie is that the winery is not afraid to experiment. A sparkling dessert style wine made from locally-grown chardonnay which the owners have called “Sparkling Rain”, and a sparkling moscato are testament to this. Check out the label on the Sparkling Rain. It is designed by Trish in partnership with a graphic artist.
But there are more serious wines thrown into the mix, many which have been made after Alasdair carefully chose parcels of grapes from other regions, drawing on his 30 years in the industry. The winery has won hundreds of awards and has a loyal following.
The on-site vineyard consists of chardonnay, gewurztraminer, chambourcin and petit verdot. It’s enough to supply about 30 per cent of the fruit required for production.
Trish now manages the winery and is an accomplished chef and artist. From 1978 she worked in Hunter Valley restaurants while running her own outside catering business.
She was the chef for their restaurant in Yamba and in Port Macquarie in the early nineties and it was during these years that her interest in art was rekindled.
She attended several watercolour workshops and later expanded into acrylics and mixed media, becoming more adventurous with both subject and technique. Her background in both hospitality and art have proven to be a great match for the Gallery at Capercaillie where her original paintings are often displayed.