My mother is visiting from the US so my husband and I thought it would be worthwhile to spend the day in Swan Valley considering the cool summer weather. I have previously bought Sandalford wines (including for Christmas), and thought it would be good to visit the winery.
The parking lot has trees that provide a good amount of shade which is great. We had to walk through the restaurant to find the cellar door. The wines available for tasting are in a menu, and there is a charge for tasting per person based on which brand of the four brands of wine selected. This can be off-set against the purchase price of a wine.
My mom and I were reading through the wine list and were approached three times by three different people asking us if we were ready. The second person offer to go through the wine list, and was incredibly short and uninformative (repeated what was already on the page - which we had read). There was no attempt to try to engage what might suit our tastes or explain what the winery's strengths were. When we were finally settled on what to try, there was nobody to be found to help us.
When someone was available, they quickly went through each wine and dryly noted that we should expect to experience. There was a passion/expertise missing.
When we were done tasting and settled on what wines we liked, we browsed the shop and it is filled with dated, gimmicky merchandise.
The staff seemed uninspired, and the rest of the cellar door felt tired. It was slightly disappointing because I think the wines are decent wines and the grounds are beautiful.
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