It's actually possible to go your entire life without hearing about McLaren Vale. The wine region is a modest purveyor, but once you arrive it's clear the passion its residents have for wine is infectious.
One of the world's most geologically diverse wine regions, McLaren Vale is a deluxe collection of favoured drops from Shiraz and Chardonnay, to Mourvedre and Grenache.
The best way to explore these many varieties and vintages is by visiting McLaren's cellar doors. Here are our five favourites.
1. Angove McLaren Vale Winery And Cellar Door
Established in 1886, Angove Family Winemakers is a company synonymous with Australian winemaking history and tradition.
The McLaren Vale winery is one of the family's finest with a welcoming terrace that looks over the vines and Vale.
This particular cellar door features floor-to-ceiling glass to showcase the Warboys Vineyard outside, while setting a relaxed lounge scene with open fire and wood oven.
'The Medhyk' McLaren Vale Old Vine Shiraz is the flagship wine, accompanied by Grenache, Chardonnay, Mourvedre and other rare varietals such as Vermentino and Fiano.
2. Chapel Hill Winery
Set within an ironstone chapel from the 19th century, Chapel Hill's tasting room is entrenched in the history of the region and the crafting of fine wine. You'll find mostly Shiraz and Cabernet drops within the stately walls, along with Chardonnay and Mourvedre.
The winery has two options for onsite accommodation. The Retreat sleeps up to 14 people in seven rooms, while The Guest House is slightly smaller with three rooms. Both offer views of the vineyard and include laundry facilities for longer stays .
Hands On Fridays are held during the year, offering guests a chance to learn the art of cooking pasta, rice or meat from harvest to plate.
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3. Beach Road Wines
This restaurant-cellar door hybrid claims to have the best view in the Vale. While it's hard to name a champion, you certainly won't be disappointed as you sit back and enjoy a selection that includes Pinot Grigio, Greco, Fiano, Shiraz and Primitivo.
Although lunch is served five days a week, dinner is only available Saturday night. If you're around town, you'd be smart to book a table in advance. Gelati, wood-oven pizzas and a family-friendly atmosphere attract locals and visitors alike.
One of McLaren Vale's more boutique wineries, a tasting at Halifax is an intimate affair. The Tasting Room can carter for eight people, giving you more opportunity to learn about the process of winemaking from the experts.
If you still want more one-on-one time, Halifax offers tutored tastings that include current drops, vintage bottles and barrel samples. Shiraz, Grenache and Mourvedre can all be found on the four-hectare vineyard.
5. Woodstock Wine Estate
If setting is your ideal accompaniment to vino, Woodstock Wine Estate shouldn't be missed. Ancient gum trees and serene gardens ring this quintessential Aussie winery where fine wines are served with live music and gourmet food.
There's a playground for the little ones and an onsite wildlife sanctuary where you can see Brush Tailed Bettongs, Swamp Wallabies and Red Kangaroos among other native wildlife.
Be sure to try the Moscato, Dolcetto Lagrein, Shiraz Cabernet and Vintage Fortified Grenache.