Exceptions:

Christmas Eve 11am - 3pm
Christmas Day CLOSED
Boxing Day CLOSED
New Year’s Eve 11am - 4pm
New Year’s Day CLOSED
Good Friday - CLOSED
Anzac Day 12pm - 4pm

Fred Caley Smith explores New York City, 1893

In 1893, Fred Caley Smith set off on a journey trekking across the globe and reporting on scientific and horticultural developments all around the world. For the 2015 vintage, our spotlight falls on December 1893 and New York City.

In 1893, Fred Caley Smith set off on a journey trekking across the globe and reporting on scientific and horticultural developments all around the world. His observations and musings were recorded in hundreds of detailed letters to his father; beautifully written, poignant insights into the lone discoveries of a young traveller abroad in the late Victorian era.

This carefully archived collection, charts a seminal journey that would change Yalumba forever.

When Yalumba created our most ambitious and iconic Cabernet Shiraz, Robert Hill-Smith named the wine ‘The Caley’ – in honour of Fred Caley Smith. It had been a long journey for Yalumba to reach this point in our history, and it was fitting to turn to our own journeyman to name our icon wine in his honour.

From the inaugural 2012 release each vintage of The Caley celebrates a new chapter in Fred’s journey. These incredible stories can be found inside the gift box with each bottle. For the 2015 vintage, our spotlight falls on December 1893 and New York City.

When Fred Caley Smith left Australian shores in 1893 his country had spiralled into an economic depression. After the heady years of sustained British investment and rapid population growth, the economic woes of 1890 hit alongside a drought that sent the country into crisis. With waning demand for wool and other Australian produced products, public works projects fell like dominoes and banks closed their doors.

Arriving in New York gave Fred hope for the future. He observed a country emerging from the aftermath of Civil War into prosperity. The city had become the capital of the nation’s trade, finance and culture. He saw spectacular architecture, palatial public buildings and beautiful parks and squares.

“We went out for a trip around the city. We ‘took in’ as the saying is Central Park, we walked down 5th Avenue looking at the grand buildings and homes. During Saturday noon I went up Broadway to Madison Square, took the elevator up the Madison Garden Towers & had a glorious view of the whole of Manhattan. In the distance loomed up the lofty arches of the great Brooklyn Bridge, the “world” building and many other notably high edifices, scores of spires in all directions & no limit to the horizon where buildings did not cover the ground.”

One of the most famous bars of the time in New York was The Hoffman House Hotel.

Considered to be “the finest saloon in the world”, famed for their cocktails and exquisite art collection Hoffman House became the gathering place for New York’s societal vanguard.

“From the Hotel Waldorf we went to the Hoffman House to see & have a drink at the far famed bar. The “Manhattan” cocktail that we quaffed was the most approved American recipe. The bar was very fine, and some of the paintings cost thousands of dollars but some would hardly be used I may say for Sunday school walls! Though, they were all very beautiful, some of the panels of the naked cupids were exquisite.”

Fred’s letters provide a look into the life and times of 1893 New York. His observations of the architecture, infrastructure, entertainment, art, and hospitality shaped his view of what was to come for the Australian people and for Yalumba. To Fred, New York City’s advancements were a beacon of hope for a new era in Australia. Wandering the streets of New York is as exciting today as it was for Fred 127 years ago and to this day we continue to be inspired by the great cities of the world.

Become an Insider and get a taste of Yalumba Wine Club

Our complimentary membership allows you to start small with your wine discovery journey, while still getting access to membership benefits. Become a Yalumba Insider and receive 5% off wine purchases in our online wine shop and in our Wine Room, as well as invitations to events and special offers.