Wine Country on Lodestar Anthology

I’ve always been interested in food and wine - and am particularly fascinated by the processes involved in making exceptional products. This curiosity was sparked while working in a restaurant in Italy, my home country, and a café in the UK, where I lived for few years; both experiences revealing just how important it is to choose the right ingredients, and to take time and care.

When I first visited Australia - having sampled their incredible wines and fresh foods - exploring the world famous vineries of South Australia was a top priority. I was keen to learn more about the region’s wine making processes and focus on sustainability … and to sample as many tipples as I could.

With more than 200 cellar doors on its doorstep, Adelaide is Australia’s wine capital and one of the nine Great Wine Capitals of the World. There are so many award-winning areas to explore should you fancy a wine-filled day trip, all outstanding in their own right (and desperate for tourism following the recent devastating bushfires). The focus of my own visit was McLaren Vale, which is a 40 minute drive from the city, the journey itself utterly divine.

My first stop brought me to Samuel’s Gorge. Housed in a 1853-built farm shed formerly used for oil making, their charming cellar door boasts stunning views of the Onkaparinga Gorge. Best surveyed from their terrace with a glass in hand.

Being in McLaren Vale, I couldn’t miss the opportunity to visit the d’Arenberg Cube, an eclectic fever-dream of a building in the middle of the d’Arenberg winery. Coming from the mind of winemaker Chester Osborn, this five-storey multi-function building blends its owner’s two loves: wine and art. Currently showcasing sculptures by Salvador Dalì and Osborn’s private collection of paintings & sculptures, the building’s rubik-cube styled shape makes it an artistic wonder in its own right - the view of the valley below from the top two balconies is a particular highlight. Walking through the building felt like a journey through the designer’s mind, and the 2018 chardonnay was a perfect accompaniment.  

My last stop was at Alpha Box & Dice winery. This farmhouse-styled shed boasts wines that transcend style, region and varietal boundaries, and are created using small parcel grapes, minimal intervention and vegan friendly methods. I felt a completely at ease here; everyone sipping wine under the sun, surrounded by picnic tables stacked with cheese boards. The perfect ending to my first day of McLaren Vale wine tasting.

Story originally published on Lodestar Anthologyread more.

#lodestaranthology #winecountry #southaustralia #travelnotes #travelphotography

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