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Laura Pearse
4 December 2020 | Laura Pearse

5 Perfect Gifts for Wine Lovers

Buying wine for a wine lover can be hard. Wine is so subjective, and personal preference can make selecting the right bottle tricky. So here at Upper Reach Winery, we have put together some gift ideas that will absolutely thrill a wine lover. 

A Wine Appreciation Class  |  A terrific way for them to get a true understanding of wine and wine styles. Perfect for beginners and wine lovers alike.

A formal seated tasting experience, in the back of the working winery surrounded by tanks, barrels and winemaking equipment with a friendly casual vibe.

Learn about the difference between sweet/dry, what oak does to a wine and aged wines. You will get a very good understanding of the basics and be tasting like a pro in no time. There will be wine tasting throughout the class, so you can put your new knowledge into action. Due to CIVID-19 classes temporarily suspended, but will resume as soon as restrictions are lifted. Vouchers available via the Wine 101 link below.

Wine 101  $55pp     |      Wine 101 & Lunch $105pp

Wine 101 vouchers


A Winery Tour  |  An all-inclusive tour experience is the perfect way to explore a boutique winery to get a real understanding of what it is like to grow grapes and how we make our wine. 

Walk through our vineyard, discovering the grape varieties that make the region so special then tour the working winery, wine tasting as they go while we explaining the whole winemaking process. Sample the wines directly from tank or barrels, just like the winemaker. Tours have been suspended during the COVID-19 situation but will resume as soon as it is safe to do so. Get mum a voucher so she can book a tour and have a treat to look forward to in the coming months.

         Winery Tour & Tasting $40pp     |      Winery Tour, Tasting & Lunch $95pp

Winery Tour Vouchers


Get them their very own vineyard for the night | Treat them to a break in our vineyard Spa cottage. Our historic cottage is the original workers' cottage built in 1907.

The cottage has stunning views from the deck overlooking our vineyard. Settle down for the afternoon with a glass of wine, a platter, or BBQ on the rear deck and watch the most amazing sunset over the vines. Walk the vineyard trail down to the Swan River, there is only one cottage so they will have the whole vineyard to themselves.

            Weekday 2 Night Stay $398  |  Weekend 2 Night Stay $598

Cottage Gift Vouchers



Upper Reach Gift Cards  |  What better gift to give a wine enthusist but wine?!? Great gift idea for the last minute gift.

Instant gift cards available $50  $100  $250 

These gift cards can be used for our winery tours, wine classes, cottage stays, and of course Wine! Perfect if you are a little unsure what wine styles they like (we can be a little snobby, us wine folk, when it comes to personal wine preferences)

Gift Cards


Value 6 packs | These great value 6 packs can be ordered online with your personal message included in the box and shipped to the recipients home or office anywhere in Australia. There are 4 value packs to choose from, so you can be sure to find the perfect bundle at a really great price!

Choose a Value 6 Packs


Time Posted: 04/12/2020 at 1:00 AM
Stephen Wallace
23 October 2020 | Stephen Wallace

Virtual Wine Classes






Time Posted: 23/10/2020 at 2:00 PM
Laura Pearse
12 October 2020 | Laura Pearse

Wine Shows: What's the Difference Between a National and a Regional Wine Show? Upper Reach Winery

The Perth Royal Show is a national show so wineries from all over Australia, with hugely varying climates and growing conditions enter their top wine.

Whereas the Swan Valley Wine Show is a regional show, which enables the judges to look at one region and to get a real feel for the wine styles coming from that climate

Time Posted: 12/10/2020 at 7:08 PM
Laura Pearse
1 October 2020 | Laura Pearse

Why do we call our wines 'The Gig'

Why call a wine The Gig?

In 1996, 24 years ago when we bought Upper Reach we were amazed to find that Captain Stirling camped opposite, on his first exploration of the Swan River.

Stirling's boat up the riverOn reading Stirling's diary & accounts from the time, it was clear that the Government in England, decided to establish a settlement in Western Australia, pretty much solely on the basis of Stirling's observations from that expedition!

Captain James Stirling left his ship in the natural harbour that we call Fremantle and explored the Swan River on a sailing dingy, the type of boat known as a 'gig'.

They camped on the opposite riverbank to Upper Reach, but explored from the river to the foothills.

"On a high bank we pitched our tent; the richness of the soil...the shrubs, the majesty of the surrounding trees, the abrupt banks of the river...the view of the blue mountains, from which we were not far distant, made the scenery around this spot as beautiful as anything of this kind I had ever witnessed." Stirling 1829

We wanted to celebrate the contribution that the soil here at Upper Reach made to the settlement of WA, and of course the soil is fundamental to our wines.

Making a pair of approachable, easy drinking wines called The Gig, after the small sailing dingy that Stirling used, seemed appropriate.

2020 Gig | Chardonnay & Semillon blend

2017 Gig | Shiraz

Time Posted: 01/10/2020 at 12:23 PM
Laura Pearse
16 May 2020 | Laura Pearse

Virtual Wine Tasting Class | Fortified

As we're coming into colder weather, it's time to get the fire blazing & dive into our stickies & fortified. 

Upper Reach will be doing this  Tasting Class exploring Fortified Wine and all its warming deliciousness.

We will take a look at our:
- Tawny
- Liqueur Muscat

We'll be talking about tasting notes, food pairing, and in particular ageing fortified, the fortification process & how the Swan Valley is unique for its dessert wines.


Time Posted: 16/05/2020 at 7:20 PM
Laura Pearse
9 May 2020 | Laura Pearse

Virtual Wine Tasting Class | Sparkling Wine

By popular demand from our last Livestream, Upper Reach will be doing a Free Live Tasting Class that will explore Sparkling Wine in all its GLORY.

We will take a look at:
- 2014 Sparkling Chardonnay
- 2018 Sparking Chardonnay (Pre-Release)

We'll be talking about tasting notes, food pairing, and in particular the process of making our sparkling, disgorging & riddling and how we make a rich creamy mousse.


Time Posted: 09/05/2020 at 7:03 PM
Laura Pearse
2 May 2020 | Laura Pearse

Virtual Wine Tasting Class | Shiraz

Virtual Wine Tasting Class | Shiraz

By popular demand from our last Livestream, Upper Reach will be doing this Tasting Class that will explore our exceptional Reserve Shiraz & how it's unique micro-climate influences it's character.

We will take a look at:
- 2016 Reserve Shiraz
- 2009 Reserve Shiraz

We'll be talking about tasting notes, food pairing, and in particular age-ability & how age influences flavour. We will talk about cellaring conditions and how long to keep a Shiraz.

So get your Shiraz ready to drink so we can make your Saturday in isolation a little less boring :D




To host your own tasting at home, you will need these shiraz. Enjoy!

Time Posted: 02/05/2020 at 7:42 PM
Stephen Wallace
26 April 2020 | Stephen Wallace

Best Recipes & Wine Pairings

Welcome to Upper Reach Winery's Recipe Sharing

We want to hear what you've been cooking ...

Let's share ideas, match the perfect wine & find inspiration for our next cullinary creation.


It's this time of year I start to wander back into the kitchen, see which fruit and vegetables are in season then maybe ponder on the best Sourdough recipe, method of making a gooey meringue or simply favourite comfort food.


To start us off, Derek the winemaker at Upper Reach, has been having great fun making his own sourdough starter that he can re-use over & over again by feeding it. It is absolutely delicious and perfect for pizza dough as well.

(being a winemaker, he's into yeast...yeast to start a wine ferment, yeast for bread....its all about fermentation)

Sourdough Starter (Special thanks to


  • Whole wheat flour
  • Unsweetened pineapple juice
  • Purified water (vital, tap water will kill your starter)


Step 1. Mix 3 ½ tbs. whole wheat flour with ¼ cup unsweetened pineapple juice.
Cover and set aside for 48 hours at room temperature. Stir vigorously 2-3 times a day. (“Unsweetened” in this case simply means no extra sugar added).

Step 2. Add to the above 2 tbs. whole wheat flour and 2 tbs. pineapple juice.
Cover and set aside for a day or two. Stir vigorously 2-3 times a day. You should see some fermentation activity within 48 hours. If you don’t, you may want to toss this and start over (or go buy bread?)

Step 3. Add to the above 5 ¼ tbs. whole wheat flour and 3 tbs. purified water. Cover and set aside for 24 hours.

Step 4. Add ½ cup whole wheat flour and 1/4 to 1/3 cup purified water.

You should now have a very healthy sourdough starter.


We have been hearing great recipes from our wonderful Cellar Club Members.

One of which came from Jeremy & Tilly for Slow Roasted Duck.

This had us salivating as soon as we strated reading the email.. Thank you so much guys!

Slow Roasted Duck (Special thanks to Jeremy & Tilly)



  • 3 whole frozen duck from Coles freezer section, (get them when they’re on special for $16)
  • 2-3 tsp Chinese Five Spice 
  • 1 Jar of Hoisin
  • 1/2 Bottle of Upper Reach Gig Grenache
  • 1/2 bottle sweet soy sauce
  • 2 Star anise
  • Large table spoon marmalade
  • Juice of one orange and shave a little rind
  • Large table spoon of butter


Step 1. Defrost the ducks and cut them in half. Trim off neck,spine, parsons nose etc. & Pre-heat oven to 140‎°C.

Step 2. Sprinkle the skin side generously with Chinese 5 Spice.

Step 3. Foil a large oven tray, place ducks on tray & pop in the oven for 4.5 Hours.

Step 4. Let's make the sauce! Combine & reduce the following in a large saucepan until thickened: 1 Jar of Hoisin, 1/2 Bottle of Upper Reach Gig Grenache, 1/2 bottle sweet soy sauce, 2 Star anise, Large table spoon marmalade, Juice of one orange and shave a little rind, Large table spoon of butter.

Step 5. Serve with rice and Bok Choy plus the rest of the Gig Grenache (assuming you didn’t drink it already). You’ll probably need another couple of bottles though ;-)

Absolutely delicious guys


This recipe is one of Laura's FAVOURITES when we head into Autumn. 

Lemon & Thyme Pork Belly

(Image Credit


  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp fennel seeds
  • 2 large cloves garlic
  • Grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 tsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 1½ tbsp extra-virgin olive oil 
  • 1kg boneless pork belly, skin scored


Step 1. Place salt, fennel and garlic in a mortar and pulverise with the pestle until garlic has broken up.

Step 2. Add lemon zest and juice, and thyme leaves and lightly pulverise. Stir in oil. Rub marinade all over both sides of pork and set aside to marinate for at least 1hr, preferably overnight.

Step 3. Preheat oven to 180°C (160°C fan).

Step 4. Rub pork skin with paper towels until dry. Place pork in a shallow roasting tray, skin-side up, and cook for 1½ hrs.

Step 5. Increase temperature to 200°C (180°C fan) and cook a further 30mins or until skin is crisp. If crackling is not crisp enough, place pork under a grill until crackling is done to your liking (watch very closely).

Step 6. Place pork on a board, tent loosely with foil and stand 15mins. Cut into bite-size pieces and serve.

Super yummy! Plus, that Crackling is to die for :)



Please share your recipes with us by sending them to 

We love pictures of your creations as well!

Time Posted: 26/04/2020 at 1:00 PM
Laura Pearse
25 April 2020 | Laura Pearse

Virtual Wine Tasting Class | Chardonnay

Virtual Wine Tasting Class | Chardonnay

By popular demand from our last Livestream, Upper Reach will be doing this weeks FREE Live Tasting Class that will explore Chardonnay & the use of Oak Barrels.

We will take a look at:
- 2019 Unwooded Chardonnay
- 2019 Reserve Chardonnay
- 2013 Museum Reserve Chardonnay

We'll be talking about tasting notes, food pairing, age-ability & how Oak Barrels influence the flavour profile of White Wines.

So get your Upper Reach Chardonnays ready to drink so we can make your Saturday in isolation a little less boring.

If you are unable to collect our wines or have them shipped to you in time, for the purpose of this class you can substitute our wines with an Unwooded Chardonnay, an Oaked Chardonnay and aged Oaked Chardonnay.

After how much fun our last Live stream was, we're very excited for our subsequent Virtual Wine Tasting, we hope you are too! We hope these are interactive classes , so you will be able to type your questions and comments through out the class with other like minded wine enthusiasts.


Time Posted: 25/04/2020 at 7:11 PM
Laura Pearse
19 April 2020 | Laura Pearse

Virtual Wine Tasting Class | Trio of Reds

Virtual Wine Tasting Class | Trio of Reds


Back by popular demand from our last Livestream, we have decided to explore Red wines ranging from Light - medium-Full Bodied and explain the difference. 

We will take a look at:
- 2018 Grenache
- 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot
- 2016 Petit Verdot (NEW CLUB MEMBER RELEASE)

We'll be talking about tasting notes, food pairing, age-ability & the wine making processes make for a light/full bodied Red Wine.


Join us next session for Chardonnay MasterClass. We will be looking at Good, Better, Best....(in our opinion) of the Chardonnay varitey. Unoaked vs Oaked.... winemaking secrets, food and wine matching and tasting notes.

Time Posted: 19/04/2020 at 1:52 PM