Hunter Valley
The Hunter Valley is the cradle of Australian viticulture. This is where James Busby planted vine cuttings that he had shipped from Europe in the 1830s and which were subsequently propagated throughout the nation. The Hunter Valley is most closely associated with a distinctive style of dry, unoaked Semillon that has been produced since the 1870s. The wines show a fresh, lean citrusy quality in youth but have a remarkable ability to age into nutty, golden, lanolin-scented wines. Oaked Chardonnay and Shiraz, particularly from older plantings round out the specialties. Overall the wines are not as weighty and rich as those from the Barossa, but the Hunter is a great source of distinctive wines and viticultural rarities. (Wine/Appellations)