This lovely French Provincial Estate in Broke has just opened a cellar door.
Nothing says long weekend like a road trip to the Hunter Valley to escape the hustle and bustle and indulge in some great food and wine. And we know just the place you need to visit for that much-needed R&R. It’s Talits Estate, who just this month, opened their new cellar door in Broke Fordwich.
Dubbed ‘the tranquil side of the Valley’ the picturesque rural region of Broke is one of our favourite areas in the Hunter to visit. And, as you’re travelling down Milbrodale Road enroute to Talits Estate, you’ll quickly see why – the views of the surrounding vineyards, olive groves, farmlands and mountains are quite breathtaking and create a serene charm that you won’t find anywhere else.
It’s the perfect setting really for Talits, whose luxurious French Provincial farmhouse, one of the region’s most recognisable properties, sits nestled into the Brokenback Mountain.
Talits have owned this magnificent Estate for eight years. According to owner Gayle Meredith, opening a cellar door was a way to share the Talits Estate story and their wines.
“Since acquiring Talits Estate we've had a long-term vision for our wine-making and the cellar door experience we wanted to create around it. Over the years we've had such fantastic feedback about our guest house and our wines - it's so great to finally be able to showcase that Talits Estate experience to the broader wine loving community."
With her desire to bring something unique to the area, Gayle enlisted Newcastle-based firm, EJE Architecture to design the property and bring their cellar door vision to life. Now open for tastings, the cellar door which is situated at the front of the property, is every bit as lovely as the ‘big house’ at the back – a modern take on the larger French Provincial classic. Gayle notes.
“I wanted to develop a space that was respectful to the original estate's design and heritage and at the same time, create an engaging, contemporary cellar door experience. So far, the response from visitors has been really positive.”
Walking into this thoughtfully designed tasting room, fitted out beautifully by Gayle herself, it’s easy to see why.
The cellar door, while not massive, has lots of beautiful tasting spaces throughout. You can sit up at the bar, lounge in front of the fireplace (perfect for those cool winter days) or head outside to the terrace and find a lovely spot to sip, swirl and admire the gorgeous views.
They even have a couple of smaller private decks overlooking the water or if you’re with a larger group, a gorgeous 8-seater dining room tasting table that runs along the window-side to the terrace.
Now, for some tastings. Gayle suggests starting with their two Sparkling wines, the Pinot Noir Rosé and Merlot Rosé. Both of these wines are lovely and have equally delicious table wine equivalents if bubbles aren’t your thing.
Also featured on the wine list is the newly released Chardonnay, "Le Reserve Privée", meaning ‘the private reserve’ and the "Le Fruit Défondu", or ‘the forbidden fruit’, a 50/50 Pinot Noir Syrah blend that’s subtle and elegant. Why forbidden fruit? According to Gayle, it’s a cheeky reference to the fact that in France it was traditionally forbidden to blend Pinot and Syrah.
Talits also have a flight of red wine vintages you can taste and compare, all made exclusively with fruit grown on the Estate.
There’s plenty more on the wine horizon to get excited about too. Talits will soon be releasing a new wine, a Chianti blend which is a 50/50 Merlot and Sangiovese red wine called "The Rogue Rooster". Similar to "Le Fruit Défondu", The Rogue Rooster is all about breaking the traditional winemaking rules of Chianti.
Keep your eyes out for a Semillon, Blanc de Blancs, a 100% Shiraz and a Pétillant Naturel (sparkling wine) that’ll be introduced to the Talits portfolio with the 2021 vintage.
Of course, Talits wines, who are made by talented local winemaker, Daniel Binet are lovely in their own right but are certainly enhanced when paired with one of Talits delicious grazing boards.
At the moment they’re offering ever changing platters that feature European and local produce as well as Charcuterie. As you might guess, the local produce features a selection of gourmet goodies from Broke, including olives grown at Talits Estate.
If you're partial to a cold brew, here's some happy news. Talits Estate have recently partnered with a local Hunter brewery to produce small batch beers under the name, Broke Brewing. At any one time you’ll find up to four beers on tap which you can also take-away in growlers.
Parents out there will be pleased to know that Talits Estate is also child friendly. If you’ve got young ones in tow, your best bet is to find a table outside where the kids can run around on the front lawn and if they like, play outdoor games such as Corn Hole or Croquet. The lawn games aren’t just for the kids though. Playing a round of Pétanque (a French game of boules) on the lawn at Talits with a brew or glass of sparkling in hand is an ideal way to spend your time in Broke.
If you’ve got a furry companion you can bring them along too. Talits Estate has a purpose-built grassy fenced-off space for your pups to play.
It's no secret that Talits have gone to great lengths to provide visitors to the Estate with a memorable wine tasting experience. Gayle puts it beautifully.
“The idea for the cellar door has always been around having a bespoke wine experience. We want it to be a place where visitors can stay for a while and share some great food and wine – you know, bring the kids, bring the dog and relax.”
In addition to all the splendour, cold beer, delicious wines and grazing boards, you can stop by Talits Estate for barista coffee, any time of day. It’s a great little add on and particularly good news if you’re feeling a bit fatigued from wine tasting your way around Broke or if you’re the designated driver for the day.
“We love the village of Broke and we hope we can add something special and unique to the area.”
Indeed Gayle, mission accomplished.