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Friday 13 January 2023

Sensory garden a new wine tourism drawcard in Tasmania

A sensory garden that helps wine lovers examine the aromas, tastes and textures of various varietals is a unique new tourism drawcard in Tasmania's Tamar Valley.

Holm Oak winemaker Bec Duffy and her viticulturist husband Tim Duffy have just launched the new experience at their Rowella vineyard and cellar door - a short drive from Launceston.

A guided walking tour of the sensory garden can be combined with a premium wine tasting to better understand the flavours and textures of what’s in the glass.

Combining Bec and Tim’s love of gardening and winemaking, the couple began planting their sensory garden seven years ago.

After extensive research, Bec travelled to the Napa Valley in California to see what other world-class experiences around sensory gardens looked like and aimed to create something that was unique to Tasmania.

The garden is now in full-bloom and ready to show off the tastes, aromas and textures found in the Holm Oak range.

Guests can join the cellar door manager on a walk around the garden to forage for fruits, flowers and herbs to pair with wines from the range.

City slickers cab sample the essence raspberries, strawberries and cherries, take in the scents of the rose garden, herbs and citrus leaves, as well as the more savoury notes spice of pepper berries.

There are six varietal areas of the sensory garden, and each area has been planted with edibles, plants and flowers. Guests can see and taste the differences - and similarities - between pinot noir, chardonnay, pinot gris, moscato, cabernet sauvignon, shiraz, riesling, arneis and sauvignon blanc.

In addition, there is an Insectarium, planted to attract insects and encourage biodiversity, along with a texture garden.

“Wine is such a sensory experience and we wanted to be able to bring some of the flavours alive for wine lovers to better understand what is in their glass, in an accessible way," says Bec Duffy.

"It’s unique to Tasmania and we hope it will add to the ever-growing wine and food scene here.”

Self-guided tours are also available, just follow the signage throughout the garden.

Pre-bookings are essential here:

The experience is available at 10am Wednesday- Friday and lasts 90 minutes. It is seasonal and weather dependent and costs $50 per person (up to six people maximum at one time).

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