The vineyards of Cowra are surrounded by farmland, olive and orchard groves on the rolling slopes of New South Wales’ Central Ranges. The region is recognised for generous, full flavoured chardonnay with ripe, peachy character. Other whites include semillon, sauvignon blanc, verdelho, riesling and gewürztraminer. Red wines are soft and approachable with ripe berry flavours. They include shiraz, cabernet sauvignon and merlot. GSM blends and some shiraz viognier styles also exist. Cowra is located some 300km west of Sydney. The region is comprised of two main valleys carved out by the Lachlan and Belubula rivers. Commercial viticulture was established in 1973 and grew quickly through the 90s to reach over 2,000 ha under vine. The grape growing district is now home to a number of boutique wineries, along with global names like McGuigan. Cowra lays claim to a number of organic vineyards and aims to make wines of regional character with minimal environmental impact. The climate is warm, dry and continental with noticeably late Summers. Gentle elevations sit at around 300 metres. Soils range through alluvials on the river flats to brown sandy/clay loams over red clay subsoils on the slopes. Cowra, Canowindra and Billimari are classic country towns. Cowra is home to Australia’s World Peace Bell. Usually an honour reserved for the national capital, it was awarded by the UN in recognition of enduring contribution towards world peace, international understanding and friendship.