We’re finally past mornings of -4 degrees and days with a maximum of 10. The weather is warming and the trees are blooming, so there’s no better time to step out of the house and experience Canberra.
Living here, we often forget how many amazing things there are to see and do. Because everything is a mere 20 minute drive, it’s easy to get stuck in the same routine and avoid driving down less-travelled roads…where something new and different is waiting to surprise us.
Tried and tested spring activities like Floriade make for a great day out, as do trips to the Jerrabomberra Wetlands, Dairy Farmers Hill at the Arboretum and Cockington Green Gardens. You could also do a little bushwalking or cycling around the lake, or venture to some of Canberra’s newer suburbs like Lawson and Throsby to test-drive their paths.
Driving for 10 minutes more will get you just outside Canberra with undulating hills and a mountain backdrop – perfect for a picnic lunch or a visit to one of the nearby wineries.
Contentious Character, previously Lambert Estate, is set on 60 acres just 30km east of Canberra, with views of rolling hills and the snowy mountains.
The winery is well known for their range of complex wines and profound wine tasting experiences, with a brunch and lunch menu prepared by one of Canberra’s top Italian-trained chefs, who loves to incorporate native Australian ingredients.
Last long weekend saw the launch of their spring menu, and this long weekend Monday they’re celebrating by hosting the popular Contentious Character “Vintage Flights” experience.
“Guests can choose between a Chardonnay menu and a Shiraz menu, with vintages ranging from 2003 through to 2017,” says Tony Mansfield from Contentious Character. “It’s a journey of taste, with every wine paired to a complementary plate – such as wood-fired chicken, roasted carrot and cumin or crumbed local lamb cutlet with salsa verde.
“What’s unique about our winery is the diversity of wines and the availability of vintages. When you do a weekend wine tasting here, there’s 13 tastings. The whole point is to encourage discussion and debate around wines, and compare older vintages such as a 2001 with a 2016 Shiraz, and a 2003 with a 2015 Riesling. It’s an educational experience, and we offer some really unusual wines such as our Rose and 2013 Sparkling Merlot.
“Everything in the kitchen is made to complement the wine, not the other way around. Produce is sourced locally (as often as possible), and inspired by native Australian ingredients, such as wattle seeds and strawberry gum. There’s also pasta and wood-fired pizzas, and lots of local meats and cheeses to try.”
It’s a great way to indulge in something a little different, and perhaps venture down a road less travelled this long weekend!
To join Contentious Character for a Vintage Flight this coming Monday, call 6238 3830 to book or learn more at Contentious Character.
Address: 810 Norton Rd, Wamboin NSW 2620
Contentious Character is open for brunch, lunch and wine tastings every weekend between 10 am and 5 pm. Everyone is welcome.
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