One of Australia’s oldest wineries Dalwood Estate is set to reopen its doors for the first time in more than three years after a rigorous revival project.
The historic winery, formerly known as Wyndham Estate, will welcome guests this weekend 190 years after it was established at Branxton.
The estate sat virtually untouched since its closure in 2014 until last year when Iris Capital bought the property, adding a third winery to its Hunter portfolio alongside Hungerford Hill Wines and Sweetwater Wines.
After a major 12-month renewal program, the 260-acre property has a new lease on life and has been restored to its former glory.
With a return to its original 1828 establishment name, Dalwood Estate boasts a heritage winery building, manicured lawns and garden beds, a function centre, cellar door, restaurant, walking trails and public barbecue areas on the banks of the Hunter River.
Iris Capital general manager Craig Hibbard said this weekend was about celebrating the revival of an Australian icon and reopening it to the community.
“It’s been a busy 12 months – imagine a 260-acre estate that hasn’t been maintained for three years – but we’re really proud of Dalwood’s transformation and we can’t wait to share it with the wider community,” Mr Hibbard said. “Our aim is to revive the property’s heritage and restore it to a fully operational vineyard again.
“Dalwood Estate shares historical significance with the winemaking industry and not just in the Hunter Valley.”
As well as being one of, if not, the oldest winery in Australia, Dalwood is understood to be the first winery in the country to establish a commercial shiraz vineyard.
The main building, which reopens this weekend, is 2500 square metres and includes the old winery, cellar door, restaurant, ceremony locations and three function rooms.
The function centre can hold up 400 seated guests and has secured relevant licences to host live concerts and music festivals.
“In the coming months we aim to have the cellar door reopened and fully operational,” Mr Hibbard said.
“Our first grapes for vintage 2018 were harvested last Friday and our team is busily working away on Dalwood’s premium Chardonnay, Semillon and Shiraz wines, which will be released this year.”