THE WINERY & CELLAR DOOR
Handcrafting Wines Since 1991
"2011 Hunter Valley Cellar Door of the Year"
The Pepper Tree winery was founded in 1991 and has been developed as one of the show pieces of Hunter Valley Wine Country. It is part of a quality food, wine and accommodation triumvirate comprising Peppers Convent Guesthouse, Circa 1876 and Pepper Tree Wines with its surrounding manicured gardens and vineyards.
The popular boutique Cellar Door has been a regular winner in the tourism arena – complementing the Pepper Tree wine success on the show circuit.
Pepper Tree produces premium varietal wines sourced from its own vineyards in the Hunter, Orange, Coonawarra and Wrattonbully regions. Pepper Tree currently produces more than forty thousand cases per year with distribution well beyond cellar door into specialty stores and fine restaurants throughout Australia and selected international markets.
Pepper Tree has also branched out into hand roasting coffee onsite with the new addition of Contango Espresso-Roasters to enhance the customer experience.
"2012 DUX, ADVANCED WINE ASSESSMENT COURSE (AWAC) - AWRI"
"2014 YOUNG WINEMAKER OF THE YEAR - GOURMET TRAVELLER WINE"
"2015 RISING STAR OF THE YEAR - HUNTER VALLEY LEGENDS AWARDS"
"2015 LEN EVANS TUTORIAL SCHOLAR"
Gwyn studied Oenology at Roseworthy University, Adelaide, graduating in 2005. Since then working three vintages in France - Languedoc, St Emillion and Burgundy, held an Assistant Winemaking role at Villa Maria in New Zealand, before being promoted to Operations Winemaker. Gwyn was then offered a position at McWilliams Wines with the pivotal role of building the production across both New Zealand and the Hunter Valley. In 2013 she accepted the position of Chief Winemaker at Briar Ridge, and soon after added General Manager to her role. With her natural ability evident, Gwyn was appointed Head Winemaker – Davis Premium Vineyards & Pepper Tree Wines in October 2015. Gwyn’s achievements so early in her career are impressive. In 2015, Gwyn was awarded the Rising Star of the Year award at the Hunter Valley Legends Awards and became a Len Evans Tutorial Scholar. All this following on from a very successful 2014, when she was awarded the prestigious Gourmet Traveller WINE, Young Winemaker Medal. Additionally in 2012 Gwyn was awarded the title of ‘Dux’ at the Australian Wine Research Institute, Advanced Wine Assessment Course. As a result Gwyn now judges at national wine shows throughout Australia. Gwyn’s enthusiasm and dedication to the Hunter Valley wine industry, passion for creating wines with a strong sense of place, and the confidence to push boundaries in winemaking is evident in the success she has had.
In another life John Davis was a successful oil exploration geologist. In 1982 he bought his first vineyard and by 1988 his first winery.
What started out as a serious hobby gradually became his sole business focus. John has used his geological knowledge to purchase select vineyard sites in four of Australia’s premium grape growing areas – the Hunter Valley, Wrattonbully, Coonawarra and Orange.
His purchase of Pepper Tree in 2002 completed his objective of putting together his own vineyards with a compatible high quality boutique winery, where each vineyard’s terroir can be fully expressed.
John’s house is situated in the middle of his Hunter Valley vineyard at Mount View.
Pepper Tree Wines is acknowledged as one of the most awarded boutique wineries in Australia amassing a show record out of all proportion to its size.
This includes the Jimmy Watson Memorial Trophy in 2001 for a Pepper Tree Cabernet Sauvignon and in 1999 the Trophy for Best Merlot Worldwide at the International Wine & Spirit Competition in London.
Not to be overshadowed by the reds, the 2001 Pepper Tree Wines Sauvignon Blanc Semillon is the only Australian wine ever to win The Best Sauvignon Blanc of the Year (Australia & New Zealand) in the annual Winestate Magazine awards.
In recent times, Pepper Tree has also taken out in consecutive years, the Trophy for the 'Best Individual Vineyard' Cabernet of show at the Limestone Coast Wine Show in 2011 and 2012. In 2015, Pepper Tree amassed a total of 5 Trophies at the Limestone Coast Wine Show - Best Cabernet, Best Single Vineyard Wine, Best Red Wine of Show, Champion Wine of Show and the International Judges Trophy.
This is also reinforced by the five star ratings Pepper Tree Wines has received from James Halliday in his Australian Wine Companion over the past years.
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