A visit to South Australia is on any self respecting wine lover’s list although beyond the vineyards, pretty villages, and country trails, there is still much to see and do for a variety of ages, all within a short drive from Adelaide’s CBD.
Prior to heading to the wine regions, we spent several days in Adelaide’s CBD soaking up the beautifully maintained Federation architecture that is found everywhere, and of course the great food. We were fortunate to sample some of the best Thai, (Golden Boy) and Japanese food (Shobushu) plus pizza (Sunny’s) that I have ever tasted. These culinary delights were further enhanced by the great service, no matter whether it was the local pub or high-end restaurant, all the staff without exception, were so knowledgeable and proud of their local wine and produce.
My wine-touring gang consisted of two couples and an eleven-year old child whose mission was to meet celebrity chef Poh, and sample some of her finest goods at Jamface in Adelaide’s Central Markets.
Once this mission was accomplished, we started our itinerary of three wine districts with our first day spent in the Adelaide Hills. Our first stop was the charming German-inspired historic village of Hahndorf that is just 35 minutes from Adelaide. This township has another bonus which is that it is only minutes away from Australia’s superior sauvignon blanc producer, Shaw and Smith. Then just a few minutes more, lands you in the delightfully rustic winery, Petaluma.
The following day we headed to McLaren Vale to take in two quite different vineyards. We headed off and within the hour we arrived at the five-story D’Arenberg Cube that is the winery’s avant-garde cellar door and offers visitors unimpeded views across the McLaren Vale region. Fifteen minutes later we went from the latest in design to feeling like we were in a Van Gogh painting at French inspired winery, Coriole.
For our final day, we drove for just under an hour to the Barossa where our first stop was Maggie Beer’s Farm. The Farm, brainchild of TV chef Maggie Beer, is also the location for her program The Cook and The Chef. Seeing the farm animals was a real treat for the eleven-year old, plus the chance to sample some of Maggie Beer’s tasty creations.
From there we were overwhelmed at the grandeur of Seppeltsfield Estate with its acclaimed restaurant, Fiano and then delighted with the earthy wines and incredible knowledge at nearby boutique winery, Two Hands.
With favourite drops revisited, new wines discovered, celebrity chef encounters plus amazing food, each of us created our own very special South Australian experience.