Awoke to some very wild windy weather which was going to relieve a number of trees of their limbs. Our plan for today is to drive back up to family friends, Barry and Jeanette’s in the Barossa Valley who we had caught up with last Friday but this time take a tour of the Barossa Valley.
The Barossa Valley as previously mentioned in a blog s few days back, is one of the rather large wine growing areas in Australia and the oldest. Adelaide was settled in 1827 and by 1829 they had already started planting the vines in the valley. Most of the settlers who started up the wine growing industry were of German stock and had brought their vines over with them. When driving around the vineyards today you can still see a lot of evidence of the German settlers.
Barry and Jeanette had planned a route of visiting the older wineries in the district. They mentioned that there were 80 open cellar doors and 60 closed cellar doors making a total of 140 wineries altogether in what is a relatively small area.
Our first port of call was Yaldara winery where we had some tastings and came away with a white port of all things. It wasn’t Fras who wanted the port but Di the almost teetotaler. We had never heard of white port before and were rather dubious until the first sip.
Next stop was Tanundra. Don’t let this photo fool you but it was very cool with a high of 16c and blowy as all hell.
Out the back next of the winery was a croquet field and a cricket pitch where apparently the Australian cricket team come and play occasionally. For many years this building was derelict and then recently it was restored and a lot of it left in it’s original state. You can’t see in this photo but the room on the left was called the Long Room after Lords Long Room in London, which as many cricket followers know is the holy grail of cricket along with the ashes urn.
Next winery was Seppelsfield. By now we were no longer tasting as Fraser and Di realized they had not had any lunch and it was now about 3.00pm. We were just being voyeurs. This photo was specifically taken for our friend Nick who is into cars, especially Jags. Tell you what, there is certainly money around this area.
The grounds of these places were magnificent. You can see why they hold a lot of corporate functions and weddings at nearly all of these places. This one is Yalumba Winery.
We popped into a small farm run by a very famous Australian chef called Mary Beer of whom we had never heard of, but then again who would expect us to know anything about culinary cuisine. We went for a much needed coffee and there were tastings all over the shop. We tried passionfruit curd, pate’s, chocolate sauces and things we had no idea what they were. They were all delicious.
This particular photo is of grapes belonging to Jacobs Creek Winery which nearly everybody has heard of and partaken of their beverage.
The tour was completed with a trip up to a high point where we were able to look back over the way we had been traveling all afternoon. No photo we took would have done it justice. We can tell you though that the wind was just about taking us off our feet and going right through us.
Our day was finished back at Barry and Jeanette’s but not before visiting a local supermarket which kinda blew us away. It was immaculate, immense variety and quality and presented beautifully and had the best free cheese tasting you could imagine. We wandered around the store and then went back for seconds!! So you could guess by now we were not that hungry anymore.
For dinner it was toasted sandwiches with cheese (of course, but good old coon), ham off the bone, tomatoes and smashed avocado as we had pretty much stuffed ourselves prior. It was a sad farewell to Barry and Jeanette but we keep telling everyone that we won’t make it such a long time between drinks.
The drive home was a bit of a white knuckle experience as it was in the dark on unfamiliar roads, winds were blowing the car sideway, watching out for kangaroos and raining. Decision made that we would be limiting our night time driving from now on.