Its a beautiful sunny day as we set off to visit The Granite Belt Highlands Winery which is situated at the highest point of the Granite Belt. A visit to the local wineries is a must for anyone visiting or traveling through The Granite Belt.
And as there is no charge for wine tasting at any of the wineries in the Granite Belt, you can tipple to your hearts content. Just make sure you have a designated driver in case you overindulge.
The Granite Belt Highlands Winery was the first vineyard we visited:
- 135 Winkler Road
- Glen Aplin Qld 4381
- Phone: 07 4683 4303 or 0448501702
The Granite Belt Highlands Winery is owned and operated by Mark Winkler, a third generation wine maker in the Glen Aplin area.
He is an affable and obliging young man and is undaunted by the fact that we have arrived at a time when he is busy tying up tomatoes in the garden. He is more than happy to join us at the cellar door as we indulge in a spot of wine tasting.
Mark cheerfully chats with us about the Winkler heritage which dates back to 490 A.D. The Winkler’s are descended from both German and Scottish heritage and Mark’s grandmother arrived in the Granite Belt, with her family, in 1848. The Scottish theme is abundant in the room with lots of photos, books and other items of interest. On the wall there are also some very lovely works of art for sale.
The wine tasting room has a lovely ambiance with photos of the Winkler ancestry on the wall. The Winkler’s are entitled to wear the Gunn Tartan and the Bruce Tartan. Mark puts on a CD featuring pipe bands ( a favourite of mine) to set the atmosphere.
The Granite Belt Highlands Winery has wheelchair access to accommodate the regular visits from the local Blue Care patrons.
Some of the big events that the Highlands Winery celebrate are:
- Xmas in July
- Robbie Burns
All complete with pipe bands in attendance.
Then it was on to the job in hand – tasting the wine. The winery produces the following types of wine:
- Dry reds
- Sweet reds
- Dry White
- Sweet White
There are no added preservatives in the liqueurs, they are made from the unique fruit flavours of the granite belt.
Val tried both the red and the white ports and while enjoying both he settled on buying the red port.
Both he and Varinia also tried a Rose Petal Liqueur which is a semi dry wine. This may not be everybody’s cup of tea as the rose bouquet is quite pronounced but the taste is delicate and reminiscent of brandy.
This is the only winery we encountered that gives you a different glass for each tasting. We noted this as a big plus. All the other wineries we visited simply refilled the same glass.
You can purchase small bottles and also lovely looking gift packs that are ideal because it gives you the opportunity to try a variety of wines or liqueurs.
While we were there a group of visitors arrived on the Granite Highlands Maxi Tours bus and once they were settled, Mark took the time to work through the wine list with each person to find out what they like and then the tasting begins in earnest.
This was a very pleasant experience so make sure you visit The Granite Belt Highlands Winery when you are in Glen Aplin which is just only 16 kilometres south of Stanthorpe.
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The Granite Belt Highland Winery Cellar Door: