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Looking for a bottle or case or two to imbibe this summer? Look no further than some of our award-winning cellar doors and keep it local as we all drink good riddance to 2020. Salute!

Drinks on the Terrace

Centennial Vineyards, Bowral

Centennial Vineyards’ recently finished Terrace is another jewel in the crown of this award-winning vineyard and winery overlooking 80 acres of grapes including chardonnay, riesling, traminer, pinot Meunier, tempranillo and cold climate pinot noir. Try a bottle of Centennial’s Blanc de Blancs, applauded winemaker Tony Cosgriff’s sparkling white recently awarded a gold medal in the 2020 NSW Wine Awards, or why not settle in and sample the lot? This is the perfect venue to show off the Highlands to visiting friends, or to share a table for some festive or holiday drinks. Open seven days 10am to 5pm. 252 Centennial Road, Bowral


Get in the Spirit

Artemis Wines, Mittagong

Forget your Negronis, your Kir Royales and your Moscow Mules this summer and mix up a homegrown number instead. Artemis Wines’ Pinot Noir Gin Float cocktail is a cheeky little number that goes down a treat. Muddle up 5-6 blueberries in a short glass. Top with ice. Pour over 45mls of Artemis’ Goddess Gin and top with tonic water leaving one a 1cm space at the top. (Artemis clever winemaking Balog brothers favour Fever-tree Mediterranean tonic.) Now using the back of a spoon, slowly pour in Artemis Pinot Noir. Open Monday and Tuesday 8am to 4pm. Wednesday to Sunday 11am to 4pm. 46 Sir Charles Moses Lane, Mittagong


Whisky a Go-Go

Joadja Distillery, Joadja

Take a trip out to what surely must be one of Australia’s most fascinating distilleries (book a tour around the historic site before you go) and get your stock of liquid gold sorted. Joadja’s Single Malt Whisky Cask Strength, described by Tasting Australia Spirt Awards 2020 as ‘restrained perfection’ is one of distillers Valero and Elise Jimenez’s first paddock to bottle offerings, made using their own water, barley and yeast. Or if you’re looking for a something with a fruitier nose, grab a bottle of Joadja Pedro Ximénez. This is a fortified wine with a 15 per cent alcohol kick, drawn from the sherry barrels the Jimenez’s import from Jerez, northern Spain to mature Joadja’s single malt whisky, which according to Val, tastes like “a Christmas cake in a bottle’. And if gin is your poison, Joadja’s Dry Gin, with botanical notes of juniper, lemon myrtle, cardamom, angelica root, coriander and aniseed, comes highly recommended. Perfect!  Open Saturday and Sunday 10am to 5pm or by appointment. End of Joadja Road, Joadja


Crafted heaven

Eden Brewery, Mittagong

Lots of beer makers claim to be boutique but Mittagong gem Eden Brewery is the real deal. Eden, a small craft brewing operation with a true community heart, was founded by husband and wife team Jacob and Deb Newman. The Newmans, who hail from Canada and once were missionaries, really do love their beer and their community, globally and grassroots. Easy to say? Yes, but the proof is in Eden’s pudding. One-tenth of Eden Brewery’s profits go to Oxfam, and locals have told Escape SH how Jacob has been known to turn up unannounced and give a kitchen-full of whitegoods to locals doing it tough. Like Andy and Ellie Thomson, who lost their Bundanoon home in the January bushfires. So, this is one good couple making truly good beer. So this year, why not forgo those mass-produced beers and buy an outstanding local brew like Eden’s annual Christmas Gingerbread Beer, made in collaboration with the equally fabulous Gumnut Patisserie just across the street. And if you’re in the vicinity as summer heats up, try out Eden’s inhouse Beer-Garitas, frozen margarita floating about Eden’s speciality beer. Leave one out for the man in the red suit and make all his Christmases come at once. Open Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday 12pm to 8pm and Friday 12pm to 10pm. 1/19 Cavendish Street, Mittagong


Baubles Baby

Joadja Estate Winery

Five years ago, Siobhan Maloy and Matt Toomey were looking for a tree-change, so they bought a vineyard and jumped in boots and all. Today, the enterprising and hard-working young vintners have a good thing going at Joadja Estate. Their regular family friendly Jazz in the Vines muso sessions are a hit, and they have some tasty vintages, such as their sparkling wines range, Highlands Bling. Looking for sweet, refreshing bubbles as an aperitif this summer? Joadja Estate’s Sparkling Moscato. Want a zesty addition to your Buck’s Fizz? Go the Sparkling Chardonnay Pinot Noir. Tasty and with a bit of sparkle to match. Open Saturday and Sunday 10am to 5pm or by appointment. 110 Joadja Road, Joadja


Vine of the Times

Tertini Wines, Mittagong

Jonathan Holgate, one of the Highlands’ acclaimed wine makers, was integral in Tertini’s newly released sparkling white 2018 Blanc de Blancs, made from 100 per cent Chardonnay grapes grown and hand harvested locally. This fresh and complex little number has been bottle fermented and aged on lees for 24 months before disgorging, a traditional winemaking method particularly favoured in Champagne, France. Pop a cork or two for Crimbo!


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