When you think of Queensland, you don’t think of the Granite Belt. For starters, sometimes it snows there in winter – although it can also be sweltering in summer. At 1,000 metres above sea level, it is one of Australia’s highest wine regions, sitting on the western flanks of the Great Dividing Range about three hours southwest of Brisbane. Its cool climate combined with its granite soil results in unique shiraz, cabernet sauvignon, chardonnay, sauvignon blanc, verdelho and viognier. This is Queensland’s premier wine region and it is ably supported by a strong crew of cellar doors and dining options that shamelessly showcase local produce like apples, stone fruit, strawberries and fresh vegetable such as tomatoes, broccoli and capsicum.
The Granite Belt is an area of the Great Dividing Range in the Darling Downs region of Queensland and the New England region of New South Wales, Australia. The Granite Belt is centered on the town of Stanthorpe. The cool, high country of the granite belt is located on Queensland’s southern border. It is the northernmost part of the New England Tablelands.
The area gains its name from the predominantly granite rocks that distinguish it from other areas that make up much of South East Queensland. The Granite Belt is known for its spectacular flowers, and produces virtually all of Queensland’s $40 million apple crop from one million trees grown by 55 orchardists.
The area also lies within the Southern Downs region. Including the town of Warwick, the region has a population of 32,600 people. And is part of the Southern Downs Region local government area. The major river in the region is the Condamine River, a tributary of the Murray River.
This is one of Australia’s most exciting wine regions. It’s distinctive, cool climate wines are winning critical acclaim and accolades like never before and slowly but surely the wine drinking public are changing their perceptions of “Queensland Wine”.
Let CELLARDOORS.CO help you plan your trip to the Granite Belt with our guide to the best cellar doors, accommodation, food, wine tours and more.