Leeanne Gangemi-Puglisi wants city folk to support Granite Belt tourism.
Leeanne Gangemi-Puglisi wants city folk to support Granite Belt tourism.

How you can help wineries beat the drought

DARLING Downs foodies are encouraged to head south and support Granite Belt wineries as they fight off the effects of drought and bush fire.

Ten of the region’s wine producers will host Grazing the Granite Belt, a weekend feast taking in the best region has to offer.

Ballandean Estate manager Leeanne Puglisi said the event was typically held in spring the her fellow producers wanted to move it forward to prop up Granite Belt tourism.

“We’re in need of people coming to visit us at the moment and November is a beautiful time to visit the region,” she said.

“We’ve had a bit of a tough time in the Granite Belt in the last few weeks. We’ve had fires and we’re in the middle of the worst drought we’ve ever seen.

“We’re making very big decisions about our crops and how we are going to save our vineyards, so it’s been quite tough, but what we need more than anything is for people to come and support us – and the way we want you to do that is come and enjoy yourselves, spend some money in the town and enjoy the events we are putting on for people.”


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The ‘lazy grazing’ experience gives ticket holders access to award-winning wineries via hop-on, hop-off buses running on a loop.

Each winery will offer an artisanal menu for the weekend, featuring Granite Belt produce and perfectly matched wine.

A $125 ticket provides access to the whole grazing experience, including unlimited hop-on, hop off-bus transfers Saturday, four meal tickets and four drink tickets to redeem at wineries along the way and a Sunday morning breakfast with the Winemakers.

Mrs Puglisi-Gangemi has this advice for ticket holders.

“We suggest probably five wineries is the maximum visitors will do in a day,” she said.

“We call it lazy grazing and there is no hurry, so you can chose to jump on the next bus that comes along in about 40 minutes, or choose to stay once, or even twice longer and just jump on a later bus that comes along.”

“It’s a nice easy way to taste your way around the Granite Belt and see what we have to offer.”

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