Thursday, June 28, 2018

Our Hunter Valley Weekend.

Last weekend Simon and I drove up to the Hunter Valley for a 2 night getaway.
It had been such a long time since we'd visited this region, it was lovely to be back and discover all the new places and revisit some old favourites.
We dropped the boys off to school on Friday morning and enjoyed an easy 2 hour drive to the Hunter region. We didn't have an intinerary in place of things to do but we had a list of suggested places to see and restaurants and wineries to visit. We were happy to drive around and stop whenever something caught our eye.
Our first stop was the Hunter Valley Chocolate Company for a browse around and a coffee.
Inside the smell was a delicious combination of chocolate and coffee. We picked up a cute box of assorted chocolate animals to take home to the boys and some snacks for later. I loved the orange peel dipped in chocolate. Yum!  We went to the factory + showroom at 2320 Broke Road, Pokolbin. 
They also have 2 other locations at Petersen Champagne House + the Hunter Valley Gardens.

We then stopped off for lunch at Blaxlands Inn The fire was going and it was a cosy setting for a bowl of soup and a glass of wine before checking in to our accommodation for the weekend.
Simon had found the cutest little cottage for us - The Woods - Pokolbin 
We stayed in Blackwood.  It was in the perfect location, central to everything and had everything we needed. The styling is stunning and all the finishes are amazing quality.
 They provide eggs, bacon, bread etc so you can cook your own breakfasts.
Lots of firewood to stoke the fires and a fab cheese plate on arrival.  It was really perfect!

After having a wander around the property we jumped back in the car and headed out to have more of a look around. Just down the road is Pepper Tree Wines and The Convent
The Convent is so beautiful and it's on my list to come back and stay here one day. 

We then drove to the Roche Estate for a visit to The Smelly Cheese Shop to pick up some supplies and then back to the cottage to light the fire and settle in for the night. 

We decided to have drinks and nibbles out on the deck and as we were chatting we looked up and saw 2 hot air balloons hovering above. It looked so beautiful and peaceful. It completed a wonderful day.

The next morning was the perfect Winters day. A little cool but the sun was shining. We were really blessed with great weather over the weekend. We cooked breakfast and then decided to head over to The Hunter Valley Gardens for a wander. 

We weren't sure what to expect but we really enjoyed walking around the different gardens, it was so relaxing! I think we were there for a couple of hours.  There weren't many people there and at times it felt like you had the place to yourself. Definitely worth a visit!

We then had a late lunch at Baume at Ben Ean winery and then drove to the Keith Tulloch Winery for a tasting. We managed to grab a seat on the balcony overlooking the vineyards as the sun was setting. Such a beautiful part of the world and a fab way to spend a Saturday afternoon.

Afterwards we visited Cocoa Nib the chocolate shop downstairs. They have created gorgeous chocolate pieces but I especially loved their hot chocolate. A  chocolate ball in a cup and when you pour the hot milk over the chocolate ball,  marshmallows pop out. Too clever.
We also heard great things about their restaurant Muse but we didn't get to try it this time.

On the way home we saw these horse and carts taking people on their wine tours. 
Looks like such fun!

On our last night we had a late dinner at Goldfish. They have amazing tapas dishes to share. Also a great bar and cocktail list. Definitely make a booking though as it gets really busy on the weekend.

On Sunday it was time to pack up and head home but first a stop at Peterson House - Cuvee for breakfast. We heard that they did the best breakfast in the Hunter Valley and it didn't disappoint. Simon had the blueberry pancakes and they were amazing! That lemon ice cream was so good!

After an indulgent weekend we were ready to come home for a detox!  ;)
It was a really lovely 2 days away and so relaxing. I really love visiting the Hunter Valley and mainly seem to visit it during winter as its nice to rug up and sit by the fire with a wine. So cosy.

Our friend is a manager at Peterson Champagne House and gave us some local knowledge on places to visit. I've listed them below if you're interested.

Places to visit/Wineries ....

Hunter Valley Chocolate Company
We went to the factory + showroom at 2320 Broke Road, Pokolbin. 
They also have 2 other locations at Petersen Champagne House + the Hunter Valley Gardens.

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