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5 of 5 bubbles Review of Hope Estate Winery

Hope Estate Winery
Ranked #55 of 111 things to do in Pokolbin
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Attraction details
Owner description: Hope Estate draws a bigger crowd than any other destination in the Hunter. Our concerts draw some of the biggest names in the world. Elton John, Fleetwood Mac and Bruce Springsteen play here. This place has been a 'must visit' for Hunter trips since Len Evans built it in the late 60's. Owner Michael Hope took it to the next level, building an amphitheatre that holds 20,000 guests and expanding our hospitality services. We offer an exciting range of estate grown Hunter wines from our vineyards at Pokolbin and Broke. There are also intriguing wines from our vineyards in Donnybrook, Western Australia, and Kyneton, Victoria. Our Harvest Restaurant is one of the most delightful places to spend an afternoon, looking out across the valley and enjoying the innovative cuisine of Executive Chef Mert Tansu. There's a lot more happening at Hope Estate right now. Our new Brewhouse is now ready for you to enjoy a wide range of fresh-brewed craft beers on tap. We're right at the gateway to Pokolbin, a great place to meet up with your friends at the start or the end of your day in the Hunter.
Albion Park Rail
Level Contributor
20 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 March 2014

We had the chance to go to the Hope Estate for the CMC weekend, The 4 of us can not stop bragging about what a fantastic weekend. We upgraded to the Restaurant for the 3 days and we wil be booking again. To all the Staff that weekend Michell, Michelle Kerri and the rest a huge thank you for making our time so great, you don't get paid enough for the work you all do. Cant wait to see you all next year
A HUGE THANK YOU from Troy Kelly Connie and Mick love u guys

Visited March 2014
2 Thank Kelly Troy H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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295 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
14 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“HOPE I never have to live through such an awful experience again!”
Reviewed 9 March 2014

Like many other reviewers here I attended the Bruce Springsteen concert on Feb 22. 2014. I also paid $476 for the Terrace Cocktail Party and can only describe it as highway robbery. For what amounted to $250 for the food/wine package I wouldn't have said it was worth $25. The setting was of a poor standard with cheap white plastic chairs, the staff were completely inept and ignorant of the unpalatable wine they were serving. Two toilets were all that was available for a huge crowd. The food was extremely poor quality and the guests had to scramble for something to eat. Myself and three friends have written to Michael Hope and have had no response.
I would strongly advise others NOT to waste your money on such a Hopeless destination.

Visited February 2014
7 Thank Libby H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
35 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“Bruce 10/10, Hope Estate 3/10”
Reviewed 8 March 2014 via mobile

Bruce Springsteen was fantastic. The Rover coach to take us from newcastle to the Hope Estate was fine (if a little smelly in the loo, but that's generally what you find on coaches...). We arrived to join a queue for 45 minutes, blazing sun and no shade and no advice as to why the gates weren't open.
Once in, we grabbed some food from one of the stalls - an Italian sounding names which escapes me. A burger which was a bit underwhelming and a salmon topped Caesar salad which was really good. We had ordered a hamper but thought we'd save that for dinner later.
Bar queues were really small and were kept moving although only Carlton or Carlton cold available.
We spent the next couple of hours lounging around on the grass enjoying the atmosphere. When it came to collecting the hamper, they'd had the great idea to separate queues into the first letter of your surname. Funnily enough, the S to Z queue was empty. Seems though they'd had a refrigeration issue, so rather than collecting a pre-packed hamper, they were making them up as we waited. The wine was also only just being put into ice while we waited (so we went for the red which wasn't bad).
Once we did collect it, and excitedly rummaged through to see what wonderful treats awaited us, I couldn't have been more disappointed. 4 slices of shrink wrapped deli meats (I don't carry scissors with me so that was a challenge getting into), 2 large baguettes (but no butter), Greek salad minus the Greek (dry lettuce with an olive and a lonely cube of feta), the tub of antipasti was ok and the potato salad was huge but boring. Cheeses were quite nice and we didn't bother with the blobs of unidentifiable desserts. The water was as described thankfully. We expected much much more for $109 and would never buy a Hope hamper again.
Luckily, the concert was great, the venue was generally good and so we would go back but only for a smaller expected crowd.
One last thing though, the exiting scramble was downright dangerous at times. All coach-goers herded out of one gate, with wine bottles underfoot but insufficient light to see where you're treading. Hope estate do need to sort our there crowd control if they are to continue hosting such large crowds.

Visited March 2014
8 Thank Emmaandjim
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tenterfield, New South Wales, Australia
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Pretty Fair Experience”
Reviewed 6 March 2014

I've been to a few concerts at other vineyards around the Hunter Valley Region and this was my first one at Hope Estate and it had its ups and downs. I loved how convenient the bus parking is to the gate compared to others and that they are very well-equipped for the amount of alcohol being consumed on such a busy night (hardly ever had to wait) and the food, although someone overpriced at times, was easy to get to also. the thing I was disappointed in was the price of the alcohol and the very limited choice. I'm not a BIG wine drinker and I hate beer but love my Moscato, but there was none to choose from, which I was disappointed in. Also, although I had seats in the reserved section, I have heard that people aren't allowed to bring chairs to concerts that are in the GA area. If that is your policy, then stick to it! I feel sorry for the people who only took blankets and they got stuck behind someone in seats that were let in against the policy, not having seats in the first place is ridiculous so I personally think that should be changed so everyone is comfortable after paying $100+ for tickets to get in. On a positive note, I LOVED that you have people constantly cleaning the toilets... that was awesome! soooooo much better to not have to worry about drunks using the same toilets and the mess they leave behind... but more toilets in another part of the estate would be appreciated. Overall it was pretty good, but the atmosphere was not quite as relaxing and nice as other winery concert experiences I have had.

Visited February 2014
2 Thank Ash1202
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Newcastle, Australia
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Bruce was amazing…Hope estate were hopeless!”
Reviewed 28 February 2014

We attended the Bruce Springsteen concert on Sunday 23 rd Feb.
We had 4x $476.00 tickets for Terrace Cocktails in a fenced off area.
Total amount spent $1,904.00.

Overall our party of four found the whole 3 hours of Terrace hospitality very disappointing.
The two areas that require more attention were:

1) the food which was poor quality, poorly presented and in particular we had requested vegetarian options which there were none.
I discussed me being Vegetarian on the phone with was informed that food would be available.
I asked the staff on several occasions if there was Vegetarian, then after 2 hours of asking, I was informed that a meal was being
cooked and we would be the first table to be presented with the available food. (This was not the case, there was no food offered to me)
As a result, I had no food to eat at all from your package. I was then forced to rush out and fight the crowds to buy my own food before the concert started. (What was the point of expensive terrace tickets?? not what we paid for?)

2) The setting and staff service - crappy plastic chairs and tables. Inattentive staff, that ventured to the closest (same) tables (not our table on the edge) with each serving of food.
We were also informed that the bar area had run out of ice and we were drinking warm wine towards the end of our time at the Terrace area.

The final note of our experience is that we were seated in Reserve B section, and as attached above it was stated that we would be in Reserve A seating.

Ultimately we feel quite ripped off and will not be recommending the venue to others.
In hindsight we should have stuck with general admission tickets at a fair price, as we bought 2 servings of our food from outside food stalls and we were drinking warm wine to finish our experience.

Our advice would be:
1. reduce the price to match the standard or
2. increase the standard to match the price!

Also, I have emailed Hope Estate twice to inform them and they have not replied to my email…

This does not surprise me as it confirms their standards (surely someone reads their emails)

Visited February 2014
7 Thank Tammy B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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