Luxury Escapes Guide to the Barossa
From sipping a local drop that's as old as you to soaring over some of the oldest vines in the world, you can discover it all in the Barossa.
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Discover Barossa Valley
Things to see and do
Sample the region’s icons at Maggie Beer’s Farm Shop
The name Maggie Beer is synonymous with the South Australian food and produce scene, particularly when it comes to her home region, the Barossa. Although Maggie’s products are now available all over the country, a trip to her home farm shop, eatery and tasting space is a must. Browse the full range of products in the shop, including the impressive book collection, or head into the newest addition to the space — The Farm Eatery. Run by Maggie’s daughter Elli, this is a place where you can sample local produce for lunch, including fresh wood oven pizzas from their house-oven on the deck. If you’re after something special, book into one of their cooking classes or take up a gin school session — all in the state-of-the-art education space on-site.
Craft your own knife at Gardner Knives
If you’re visiting Seppeltsfield winery or the famous Fino Seppeltsfield restaurant, you’ll find an unexpected gem during your visit. Gardner Knives is home to Baz Gardner, a master knife maker who crafts custom made knives from his small studio at the Seppeltsfield property. Nestled alongside the acclaimed Jam Factory, the space is very much a working studio, whilst also acting as a sort of gallery for some of his finest welded pieces. If you book in early enough, you can take a knife-making class with Baz. He is a true talent and a wonderful local character, too, so make sure to greet him while you’re there (if he’s not in the middle of crafting a piece).
Grab the first warm loaf at Apex Bakery
Arguably the oldest bakery in the state, Apex Bakery first fired up their wood oven in 1924 and there are rumours that the oven flame has in fact never gone out. Rumours aside, the bread here is slow ferment — fermented for a minium of 10 hours, using a traditional recipe from the original baker Keith Fechner. Head in early enough in the morning, and your loaf will still be warm. Plus, you can catch all the best baked goodies before they all go. Don’t forget to grab a pasty while you’re here — they’re a famous winemaker’s hangover cure in the region.
Make like a local, and shop at the Barossa Farmers Market
If you want a true local experience, head along to the nearest farmers market to immerse yourself in the community spirit of the region. Housed undercover in the Vintners sheds in Angaston, the Barossa Farmers Market is held every Saturday, rain, hail or shine. Find everything from fruit and veggies to bread, honey and cheese. Pick up a basket full to enjoy back at your accommodation or simply indulge in a picnic of entirely local produce. There’s also a breakfast bar if you want to head along and soak up the atmosphere, have a coffee and special market burger for brekkie.
Skincare and perfume classes at Vasse Virgin
At Vasse Virgin, located at Seppeltsfield, you can learn how to make some of their popular natural skincare and perfume products in one of their comprehensive classes. There are all sorts of classes on offer, from making natural perfumery and lip balm to an Extra Virgin Olive Oil 101 class, too. Some of the offerings also include lunch at Fino at Seppeltsfield, so you can make a day of it. Everything is provided, including class notes and equipment, and you’ll get to take home the goodies you make. Embrace the natural, local aspect of the region in a way that benefits your skin and general wellbeing. Your body will love you for it.
Cheese-making class at Atze’s Corner Wines with Cultured Cheese School
Alright, let’s be honest — is there truly any better combination than cheese and wine? It’s a match made in heaven, and now you can actually make your match, thanks to Cultured Cheese School. These cheesemaking workshops are all hosted at Atze’s Corner Wines, where you will craft your very own halloumi, feta or camembert beside the barrels. Eat your dairy delights afterwards, and sample some wine while you’re there. Oh, yeah.
Taste the award-winning drops at Yalumba
A brand well recognised around the world, Yalumba is Australia’s oldest family-run winery, owned and operated by the same family for an impressive 170 years. The grounds here are spectacular — well worth a wander. Pop into the cellar door, do a tasting of their wines, and ask the team if the famous cooperage is in action. Yalumba still crafts its own barrels in the heritage cooperage on-site, and if it’s in operation during the week, you might be lucky enough to see it all in action. There’s also a range of nibbles and experiences on offer, too, so ask the team here for whatever takes your fancy, and soak up this piece of Australian winemaking history.
Go off-grid at Izway Wines
While history and heritage are synonymous with the Barossa, there are also a stack of new age wineries and cellar doors that are making their mark on the palm-lined roads. Izway Wines is one of them. It’s off-grid (a first for the region), and its sleek cellar door sits level with the ground, nestled into the hill-face. Inside, the modern interior is simple, elegant and brilliantly designed. It’s a stark contrast to many of the more historic, cosy and earthy cellar doors and an ode to the new age of winemakers and businesses here. Wines are premium, all small-batch and boutique in variety. They also utilise organic vineyard management, and run their winery from solar energy. Bravo. Head on in for a tasting (paid, but redeemable on purchase) and see the winery in action (it’s just next door).
Meet the brewer at Barossa Valley Beer
If you’re more of a beer drinker, and you find yourself in the thick of wine country here in the Barossa, fret-not! Barossa Valley Beer is here to save the day. The brewery and tasting space is open every day of the week for tastings and food. If you’re a beer aficionado, you can even meet the brewer on Thursdays at the working brewery just behind the tasting space. Every weekend, there’s live music on offer here, too, so you can sing along to sweet local sounds while you sip your way through a tasting paddle.
Top places to eat and drink
First opening in Willunga, an hour south of Adelaide, South Australian favourite Fino moved to Seppeltsfield in 2014. With local produce and simplicity at its core, Fino aims to showcase fresh produce as much as possible — the ingredients are the hero in every dish. Bread is made fresh daily and specials are prepared depending on what’s available, like locally caught seafood and pork and veggies from down the road. The menu here is shared — choose from three, four or five plates to suit your dining group. The setting is stunning, too, set among the renowned Seppeltsfield winery. So make sure you take the time to explore and sip some wine after lunch. Local tip — Seppeltsfield release a 100 year-old port every year, which is a SA icon.
As one of South Australia's most iconic wine brands, the name 'Jacob's Creek' is globally recognised. The winery, just outside Rowland Flat, hosts accommodation, the Our Table Restaurant, and a number of tours and experiences for every type of wine connoisseur. At the restaurant, food is seasonal, with much of the produce sourced from the kitchen garden. When it comes to wine, there's an impressive range to sip and taste, but make sure to try the Barossa Signature range, designed to give you the best taste of the region.
A cult favourite in the region and with city-dwellers alike, people come from near and far to indulge in the Southeast Asian recipes made by chef and owner Tuoi Do. Passionate about traditional Vietnamese cuisine, and wanting to create a little piece of her heritage in the Barossa, Tuoi opened FermentAsian in 2011. Her menu has won Tuoi and the restaurant multiple awards over the years. It’s a destination in itself, delicacies the likes of yellow curry with local South Australian mulloway drawing people in time and time again. Open for lunch Thursday to Sunday, and dinner Wednesday to Saturday.
Eat, drink and be merry at this cellar door, restaurant, winery and farm property that’s gained quite the reputation with South Australian locals and visitors alike. No matter what you’re here for, you’re in for a treat at this five-star Halliday winery. Sample riesling from nearby Eden Valley, or a classic Barossa shiraz. If you’re feeling adventurous and you’re more interested in appeasing your belly, head into the restaurant and indulge in the surprise chef’s menu available here. The chef decides on the menu each day, depending on what produce they gather from the Greenock property, so there’s no difficult decisions to be made.
A local favourite, Vintners serve up modern Australian cuisine using local produce from the region and the local farmers market. Lunch is served seven days a week with dinner every day except Sunday. It’s been awarded best regional restaurant in South Australia, and has remains one of the longest-standing restaurants in the Barossa. Think natural oysters (when they’re in season), crispy South Australian pork belly or a simple scotch fillet, cooked to your liking. Sit outside and soak up the vineyard views, or settle inside for a long-lunch or dinner matched with local wines — the perfect way to break up your day of tastings or finish off a day out exploring.
If you’re finding decisions about different wineries, distilleries and restaurants a little too tricky, why not head somewhere where you can try a selection, all at the one bar? Winner of the Gourmet Traveller ‘Best Tasting Experience’ award for 2019 in their Cellar Door awards, Vino Lokal offers drops from seven winery partners, as well as food to accompany your tastings, too. A product of the Artisans of the Barossa group, Vino Lokal is a physical space where Hobbs of Barossa Ranges, Purple Hands Wines, Schwarz Wine Company, John Duval Wines, Sons of Eden, Lienert Vineyards and Spinifex Wines come together to offer tastings. It is also a place for locals and visitors to sip, try, discuss and eat together.
Krondorf Creek Farm
Experience the beauty and hospitality of a true small-production local Barossan winery at Krondorf Creek. While the region is home to lots of large-scale iconic brands, there are also a collection of small-production wineries with delicious drops and cellar doors brimming with character. Krondorf is one of them, run by local couple Jess Greatwich and James Ehrat. The cellar door is housed in a 19th century cottage they’ve lovingly restored. Settle in for a chat and a tasting within the stone walls by the fireplace, and take in the surrounds of their picturesque vineyards. Here you’ll find classic Barossa shiraz alongside mataro, cabernet sauvingnon and more.
Tucked away in Vine Vale, at the foothills of the Barossa, Rusden is the product of fourth generation grape growers. Owner, Christian Canute says the terroir of Vine Vale is as unique as they come — the location at the foothills causing a combination of white sand and red clay. With all their grapes grown, picked and harvested on site, Rusden produces honest, true Barossan drops, reflective of the vintage at the time. The cellar door is a rustic cottage-style space with a quaint front yard to peruse and wine-making facilities adjacent. Chat to the team here about the wines and you’ll be settling in for a few hours — it’s just that kind of place. The friendly nature of these folk is infectious, but it’s the tasty wines that’ll have you coming back time and time again. Top tip — don’t leave without taking home a bottle of their iconic Black Guts Shiraz. Barossa in a bottle.
For the gin lovers
If you need a break from the wine tastings, or you’re simply more of a spirit fan, the Barossa has you covered, with their range of local gin distilleries making their mark in the wine region. If you want to sample something local, Seppeltsfield Road Distillers and Barossa Distilling Company offer tastings, gin flights, cocktails, or a simple g&t if that’s all you fancy, while Durand Distillery hosts a gin school, where you can make your own gin. Be sure to take home a bottle of their locally distilled goods while you’re there, so you can enjoy a bit of distilled Barossa when you get home, too. If you’re in the mood to sample a wide selection, Musque Bar & Restaurant is home to around 350 gins, which you can sip at the bar, or alongside some scrumptious food (they serve lunch and dinner here, too).
Nestled in a heritage stone cottage along the main drag of Greenock, El Estanco is a hidden foodie gem of the Barossa. The South American-influenced cafe-restaurant is also a corner store and tasting space for local wines without a cellar door. The menu, which spans brekky and lunch, changes from week to week depending on the seasonal produce available from locals or their own gardens. The cosy space is a joy to be in, with a homely feel and the friendliest of owners (Julian and Abby). Watch the magic happen in the tiny open kitchen and don’t leave without trying one of Abby’s freshly baked cakes — she’s the pastry chef, while Julian is the chef. Hot tips: if the weather is warm, soak it up outside in their courtyard and check out their Friday Fiestas — fortnightly Friday night pizza nights or curated dinners (book ahead).
A big day of wine tasting calls for a big cup of coffee to start your daily travels, and Fleur Social has you covered. This cafe and florist in Nuriootpa, one of the largest towns of the region, is pretty as a picture. The team here are passionate about single origin coffee and beautiful blooms, and you can sample both here. If you’re travelling from afar, you can simply sit amongst the pretty petals and enjoy your cuppa. The bagels here are well known in the region, too — you can grab one of the creative concoctions or choose whatever simple ‘shmear’ you’d like (a smattering of cream cheese, peanut butter, grape jelly — you name it!).
Stelzer Road Supper Club
This Friday night dinner club has gained quite the reputation about town, so book in ahead to get a seat at this table. Chef Tim Bourke (a local legend) crafts a new menu every week, which you’ll enjoy alongside local wines, all in the character-filled David Franz cellar door. The 1860’s cottage is a cellar door by day and transforms into this special supper club each Friday, with snack-style food and drinks offered from 6pm, or the full dining experience from 6:30pm. Everything on your plate is as local as it comes here, this intimate experience truly offering up a taste of the Barossa.