Eat & Drink

How to spend 48 hours in Lovedale

If you’ve been given the task of arranging that long-overdue friends or family catch and are looking for the ideal location, Lovedale in the Hunter Valley needs to be at the top of your destination list.

With a long list of boutique cellar doors, unique foodie experiences and a diverse range of places to stay, we've pulled together this neat little itinerary to help take your organising pain away. 

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DAY 1

8:30 - Depart Newcastle

Make the most of your weekend away and head up early on the M15 taking the Lovedale turnoff. Only a 45 minute drive from Newcastle, you’ll be there in no time at all.

9:30 - Breakfast at The Deck

First stop is Gartelmann Wines where you’ll find The Deck, a picture perfect cafe/restaurant. 

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Chef Matt Dillow has created a crowd pleaser breakfast menu that includes everything from Housemade Banana Bread to the slightly indulgent Hangover Roll that’s loaded with Fried eggs, American streaky bacon, cheddar, a hash brown, haloumi and a whole lot more. The Deck has taken full advantage of its spacious setting with every seat in the house overlooking the properties dam.

Evenings are all about the tapas, and if you happen to be in the area on a Friday night you'll catch live music between 5:30 – 8:30pm.

Address: 701 Lovedale Rd, Lovedale
Opening Hours
Mon – Fri: Breakfast - 8:30am - 11:30am | Lunch - 12pm - 2:30pm
Sat - Sun: Breakfast - 8am - 11:30am | Lunch - 12pm - 2:30pm
Fri - Sat: Dinner - 5:30pm - 7:30pm
Live Music: Every Friday Night 4:30pm - 7:30pm
More Info: click here

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10:45 - Wine Tasting at Saltire Estate 

Once you’ve let brekky settle make your way to Saltire Estate for your first wine tasting of the day. Offering a unique wine tasting experience, you'll find yourself set up amongst the vats and winery equipment whilst tasting the range of Saltire Estate wines. The Leslie family who purchased the property in 2006 didn't want to go all glam, instead sourcing second hand or made from old pallets and wine barrels to bring guests an authentic experience.

Address: 113 Wilderness Rd, Lovedale
Opening Hours
Fri - Sun: 10am - 4pm
More Info: click here

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11:45 - Wine Tasting at Allandale Winery

From wine tasting amongst the vats to some of the best views in the Hunter Valley, Allandale Winery on Lovedale Rd is your next stop. Bringing together more than 40 years of wine tasting experience together with spectacular views from the cellar front door of the Broken Back Ranges Allandale Winery makes for a memorable wine tasting stop and one you could easily settle into for the afternoon.

Address: 132 Lovedale Rd, Lovedale
More Info: click here
Opening Hours
Mon - Sat: 9am-5pm
Sun: 10am-5pm

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12:45 - Lunch at Leaves and Fishes

Lunch time already?! The Hunter Valley is all about indulging a little and taking it easy, and Leaves and Fishes combine these together effortlessly.

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The palm tree lined driveaway sets a tropical scene, combined with the informal seafood menu that offers a hint of Asian spice makes for the ideal relaxed lunch setting. Take your seat out on the undercover balcony overlooking the Leaves & Fishes pond, order yourself some Hunter Valley wines and let the afternoon pass by.

Address: 737 Lovedale Rd, Lovedale
Opening Hours 
Thu - Mon: 11am - 5pm
More Info: click here

2:30 - Arrive at Hunter Valley Lodge Retreat

It's check in time at Hunter Valley Lodge Retreat, get set to be wowed! Situated directly behind Hunter Valley Zoo, so yes expect some wild animal sounds on dusk, Hunter Valley Lodge Retreat is spectacular on every level.

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The immaculately presented grounds is where you’re introduced to the property's two life-size bronze deer. Modelled off a traditional Canadian hunting lodge the central lounge area focuses on the massive stone fireplace and soaring cathedral ceilings all of which help to create an incredibly cosy atmosphere throughout.

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The massive outdoor deck offers ample space for large groups to get social on as the sunsets behind the ranges. Featuring 11 spacious bedrooms and 8 bathrooms, reverse cycle air con, pool, a semi-commercial kitchen and all the mod cons you can't leave home without, it's the perfect big group venue the property comfortably accommodating up to 34 guests in true Canadian style.

Address: 188 Lomas Lane, Pokolbin
More Info: click here

Other Lovedale accommodation options that are ideal for large groups and families;
Ironstone Estate (also pet friendly)
Cottages on Lovedale
Wirral Grange
Hunter Homestead
Blackwattle Luxury Retreat
Winemaker’s Cottage at STOMP! Wines
Madigan Cottages

6:30 - Lillino's Bar & Trattoria

For dinner it's authentic Italian!

When owner Luigi first opened the doors to Lillino's Bar & Trattoria in June 2011 his goal was to introduce to the Hunter Valley the true flavours of Sardinia and Italy. Luigi works with as much local produce as possible while also importing the finest ingredients from Italy, like Prosciutto di Parma, mozzarella, parmesan and pizza flour directly from Napoli to ensure as authentic dining experience as possible.

Situated above St Clements Estate, the restaurants floor-to-ceiling windows allow for spectacular views together with a casual yet cosy atmopshere.

Address: 136 Talga Rd, Rothbury
Opening Hours
Thu - Mon: 12am - 3pm
Thu - Mon: from 6pm
More Info: click here

DAY 2

9:00 - Breakfast at Emerson’s

Whether there it's just for two or 20, Emerson's at Adina Vineyard offer the ideal space for all Hunter Valley visitors. For the couples take a seat at the bar, or if you have a big group get together on the back verandah and enjoy your breakfast with uninterrupted vineyard views.

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Emerson Rodriguez is the award-winning chef behind the restaurant and his more than 25 years of experience in the restaurant industry can be seen all over the menu. Breakfast is a mash of all your favs such as Pancakes with glazed banana, maple syrup, honeycomb and whipped cream, to French Toast, Bircher Muesli to the Classic Shakshuka baked eggs and Nasi Goreng   

Address: 492 Lovedale Road, Lovedale
Opening Hours
Wed – Sun: 12pm-4pm
Thu – Sat: 6pm-10pm
Sat – Sun: 8am-11am
More Info: click here

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11:00 - Drop in at Binnorie Dairy

Sadly it's time to check out, however before you leave a visit to Lovedale just didn't happen unless it included a stop at Binnorie Dairy. A Hunter Valley institution and one of Australia’s premiere soft cheesemakers, owners Sally and Simon Gough first opened Binnorie Dairy back in April 2003 and they have continued to deliver the goods ever since. Stop in for a tasting or load up the bag for later, either way it's a must visit.

Address: 25 Lodge Road, Lovedale
Opening Hours
Fri - Sat: 10am - 5pm
Sun - Thu: 10am - 4pm
More Info: click here

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