A Visit to Gallagher Wines

My Favourite Winery

It could be argued that this is also Peter Slipper’ favourite winery, especially since (allegedly) Mr Slipper visited Gallagher’s more frequently than any other in the Canberra district, on his now famous “taxi rides”.

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Shiraz vineyard, planted in 1996

We recently made another visit to Gallagher Wines, which consists of several vineyards, a fully equipped winery and cellar door. I mention this because most of the wine companies in the region do not have all three, in particular a winery.

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Assistant winemaker, Jake, setting up the wine filtering machine

What is a Winery?
For many years I didn’t consider the distinction between a vineyard and a winery. These two words were almost interchangeable in my mind. Of course, a vineyard is where grapes are grown and a winery is for processing the grapes; fermenting and ageing the grape juice; then bottling for sale. It is a place where the winemaker crafts the wine. On this trip I discovered there are a lot more steps to making good wine.

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The filters jake is fitting will remove particles as small as 10 microns from the wine. The next filtering process will remove even smaller particles.
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Greg drawing wine to assess the development of his 2016 Chardonnay

The Wine Maker
My brother-in-law, Greg Gallagher is the founder and master winemaker at Gallagher Wines, while also acting as a consultant to over twelve other wineries in the region.

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Listening to Greg talk to visitors at the cellar door is inspiring. After working for many years in the wine industry in Australia, France and the USA, he still speaks with such passion and humility about what he does and what he has achieved.

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Who is the Best Wine Judge in the World?
“You are the best judge. You know best what you like”, according to Greg.

On that basis I judge Gallagher Wines 2015 Chardonnay to be excellent, the 2014 Shiraz and 2013 Merlot to be enjoyable, quality wine. The opinions of the “official judges” can be seen from the award’s Gallagher Wines has won, including a gold trophy for the sparkling white, Blanc de Blanc.

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The Gallagher Wines Range: Sparkling Shiraz, Duet (sparkling white) and Blanc de Blanc; Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay; Merlot and Shiraz

During our visit I was able to “sample” 600 ml of Gallagher Wines first vintage, 1999 Shiraz, and found it very enjoyable, 12 years after the recommended cellar date

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Greg’s wife Libby is also an expert artisan, making various types of cheese and more recently fig jam that can be sampled and purchased. I am a big fan of Libby’s produce, especially her “Washed Blue” cheese.

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Greg and Libby, daughters Eleanor and Lauren, plus her partner Jansel are enjoyable people to be with and their hospitality is wonderful. They are all involved in the business to varying degrees. So as you can imagine, we had a great time visiting Gallagher Wines again, not just because of the wine and cheese of course.

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If you’d like to be the wine & cheese judge; sample the lot; chat to the master winemaker, or the cheese maker; or just buy wine and cheese…..you can visit Gallagher Wines.

Cellar Door open
Thursday to Monday 10 am – 5 pm
(Weekends only during August)

2770 Dog Trap Road, Jeir NSW 2582

Or shop on-line at http://gallagherwines.com.au

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Late afternoon view of western hills #2, as seen from western side of the winery
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