For fine wines, fresh produce and gourmet delights, escape to Griffith in the beautiful Riverina region in south-western NSW. You’ll find plenty of cellar doors to visit, providores with delicious local produce, quality restaurants and cafes, and festivals celebrating a rich food and wine culture.
Vast orchards and vineyards and some of Australia’s best wineries are around Griffith, where there are convenient accommodation options. The marvellous events calendar includes mouth-watering food and wine festivals, such as Taste Riverina Festival, unWINEd in the Riverina.
Designed by noted architect Walter Burley Griffin in the early 20th century as part of the Murrumbidgee Irrigation Scheme, Griffith is six hours’ drive from Sydney, five hours from Melbourne and two hours northwest of Wagga Wagga. You can also fly to Griffith Airport and rent a car.
The first vineyard was established in 1912 just outside Griffith. European migrants after World War I and II settled in the region and helped build a distinctive food and wine culture. Their contribution is celebrated at the annual Griffith Multicultural Festival and on display at the Griffith Italian Museum and at the Pioneer Park Museum, which spans 40 buildings on 11 hectares of natural bushland.
In an art deco war memorial building is the Griffith Regional Art Gallery, which hosts splendid exhibitions. Some of the best-known wineries with cellar doors are De Bortoli Wines, home of the internationally acclaimed Noble One botrytis semillon, McWilliam’s Hanwood Estate, Casella Wines and Calabria Family Wines. There are smaller boutique wineries with cellar doors, too.
For tours of wineries and farms, join Bella Vita Tours or Griffith Tours on delectable adventures of the area. In town, browse providores such as Riverina Grove, Bertoldo’s Pasticceria and Codemo Smallgoods for locally made delicacies and head for picnic areas at Cocoparra National Park, where there are exhilarating walking trails, including Falcon Falls and Jacks Creek.