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The Hunter Valley estate where you’ll want to linger

In the Hunter Valley, Winmark Wines has a long and esteemed history when it comes to producing award-winning chardonnay. The brand’s latest release, Icon 7 2 Chardonnay 2021, is no exception.

There’s something to be said for knowing what you do exceptionally well, and only doing that. It’s a philosophy that Winmark Wines adheres to when bottling some of Australia’s most applauded, and delicious, chardonnay.

The dreamy Hunter Valley estate grows exquisite chardonnay grapes, which vintners handle with care to turn into the brand’s Rusty’s Run 2019, Winmark Chardonnay 2021, and the Single Vineyard Reserve Chardonnay 2021. 

And then there’s Winmark’s latest release, the aptly named Icon 7 2 Chardonnay 2021. The ‘seven two’ heralds the move to produce a chardonnay exclusively using the premium fruit of Block 4, the Penfold’s clone vines that were planted in 1972. The new release honours the 50th anniversary of these vines.

Winmark Wines cellar door
Winmark Wines cellar door

Winmark Wines Icon 7 2 Chardonnay

While many wine producers promote the fact they have a single vineyard label in their portfolio (where a sole variety of grapes is grown on the vineyard, rather than multiple varietals), Winmark takes things up a notch with its new vintage. 

It’s made from a single chardonnay block within a single vineyard. In essence, vintners grow Icon’s grapes on the estate’s best terroir. The grapes themselves are plucked from 1972 vines cloned from Penfolds root stock, then whole-bunch pressed. 

The wine is only produced when conditions are perfect, which means sales are limited. But if you do manage to get your hands on a bottle, boy does the chardonnay dance across your palate. 

This is in no small part thanks to Winmark’s experienced team, including owner Karin Adcock, winemaker John Belsham and viticulturist Liz Riley. 

Producing Winmark Wines new Icon 7 2 Chardonnay 2021
Producing the new Icon 7 2 Chardonnay 2021 is a labour of love © Justin Aveling Photography

The Best Young Chardonnay 2021-2022

Winmark Wines’ 2021 Winmark Single Vineyard Reserve Chardonnay has been awarded the trophy for Best Young Chardonnay 2021-2022 at the NSW Small Winemakers Wine Show.

It’s the first trophy for Winmark Wines and reflects the capabilities of this small vineyard. We are excited to see what the future holds for this young wine producer.

For half a century, this site has grown exceptional fruit, with a proud history of producing highly acclaimed chardonnay. The 2021 Single Vineyard Reserve Chardonnay keeps fine company with the Winmark Rusty’s Run, Winmark Expressions and Winmark 7 2 Chardonnay.

2021 Winmark Single Vineyard Reserve RRP $55 is available online at and at Cellar Door, open 7 days a week.

Stay among the vines

Formerly Pooles Rock, the Winmark estate is the kind of place where you’ll want to linger. You can do just that thanks to on-site accommodation: four individually designed villas and lodges replete with every trimming you need for a luxe self-contained stay.

Your only problem will be choosing between the ultra-luxurious Winmark Residence replete with a private pool and tennis court, and the intimate Villa Vino with views across the estate’s dam.

Larger groups will find plenty of space to spread out in the secluded Rock View house, sleeping 10, or the Tuscan-inspired Mio Monte which sleeps 14 guests.

Each charming stay also features a fully decked-out kitchen. Guests can request a private chef to craft a meal around their bottle of Icon 7 2.

Winmark wines accommodation
Winmark wines accommodation

Outdoor art gallery

When you’re not sipping at the cellar door or relaxing in your room, explore Winmark’s extensive collection of art across a gallery and sculpture park. The former houses more than 800 paintings by some of Australia’s most talented creatives.

The sculpture walk takes you on a journey around the lush grounds glimpsing works by the likes of David Ball and Jenny Green. This adventure is not to be missed. 

The sculpture walk at Winmark Wines
The sculpture walk features works by talented Australian artists © Destination NSW/Cassandra Hannagan

Get to know Winmark Wines

Karin Adcock purchased the property in 2016 and re-established the vineyard with a wine team that is a genuine collaboration of experts. Including vineyard manager Dave Grosser from VitiGro, award-winning viticulturalist Liz Riley from Vitibit, international consultant and winemaker John Belsham, and renowned local winemaker Xanthe Hatcher from Agnew Wines.

Winmark Wines continues its remarkable revival with this team who are highly skilled and passionate and are ensuring the road from the vines to the glass is optimised.

Karin’s vision for Winmark Wines has seen not only the vineyard restored to it’s former glory, but a decision to focus on producing only Chardonnay, the queen of white wines. This has seen the development of four distinct styles of Chardonnay being produced from the site.

Winmark Wines production is small, creating a sustainable future for the vineyard and ensuring the best possible quality for every bottle.

This article originally appeared in volume 42 of Signature Luxury Travel & Style magazine. Subscribe to the latest issue today.