For all wine lovers, we did the enjoyable homework for you on the 17th of January.


A drive out to the Hawkesbury, the northern slice of the Sydney Wine Trail proved to be a bonus. Our little group of wine enthusiasts made the drive through gorgeous rural scenery to the most recent addition to the Sydney Wine Trail, Bull Ridge Estate in East Kurrajong. This is just a short drive from Jubilee Vineyard Estate and Tizzana Winery in Ebenezer.






Our good fortune on this Sunday afternoon – Ken Thorne, vintner was serving up ‘tastes’ of all his 2014/15 wines.  Over a sampling of his Vernentino, we learned a few facts about Ken. As ‘retirement’ grew close, Ken – not one likely to retire – decided to make his hobby (growing grapes) into his second career – in today’s vernacular, he reinvented himself.


He bought and cleared additional acreage (next to his property) and enrolled in a vintner class at Tafe and as part of the Tafe requirements, signed on at Tizzana Winery under the tutelage of vintner Peter Auld. Here they experimented, learning about the chemistry of Hawkesbury soils and different grape varieties.



Today, after lots of prep and plantings – some 3000 vines – Bull Ridge produces delicate Verdelho and Vermentino whites with a hint of citrus (great with seafood) along with a number of reds – Shiraz and Durif. The Durif is a favourite among Hawkesbury locals and is a full bodied wine, exceptional with roasts of lamb or beef.


Editor’s Tip:  To make your Sydney Wine Trail wine tastings first class, place an early order for a gourmet Tizzana lunch under the grape vines. Here a catered lunch,wine tastings and a bit of history about the oldest winery in the Hawkesbury are quite special. The view across to the lily pad lagoon is spectacular. 


  • If you are still ambulatory, walk across Tizzana Road to Jubilee Vineyard Estate for samplings and a great lesson on the best foods to serve with wine choices.


Three wineries of the Sydney Wine trail, a beautiful rural and scenic drive, lunch and some great wines: this is a winner of a day trip.




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Head to the farm these holiday -- take a farmyard tour and meet the chooks and 'Pudding', the cow. Explore the stables and pat our horses.


See how kids went to school in the 19th century and ring the bell -- it's time to start the school day!


11am  Family Farrmyard tour -- meet the animals

12 Noon Tour the Rouse Hill House -- for all ages

1pm Ring the Bell -- School house tour

2pm  Tour the Rouse Hill house -- for all ages

3pm Rouse Hill House highlight tour


Tickets for tours are included with museum entry. For more details:




Make your mini Claymation film. Write your story and create your (clay) characters. Design backdrops, shoot and edit your footage. Add titles, music and sound effects. For budding directors, camera crews and alll creatives! Your chance to 'create'! 

9am - 3.30pm Tickets $110. SLM members $95


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