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South Australia is home to hundreds of vineyards. Although we couldn’t visit them all, Mr. Selfish and I did manage to visit eight of them during our short stay in Adelaide. We visited four wineries in Barossa Valley, which is about 60 km northeast of Adelaide and is known for its red wines. We then visited four wineries in McLaren Vale, which is about 35 km south of Adelaide and is known for its production of shiraz wines.

Alcohol

No, just kidding. Mr. Selfish wasn’t even driving that day.

1. The Big Player: Jacob’s Creek

The first four wineries we visited were in Barossa Valley. We started with one of the biggest wineries in the area – Jacob’s Creek. It is an institution in the area and, of course, exports a great deal of its wine to the States.

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We never really drank it in the States, and we probably won’t start. The odd thing about Jacob’s Creek is that there is no vintage on any of its bottles because they ensure that each bottle of wine, regardless of year, is exactly the same.

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It was fun to sample the many, many wines at Jacob’s Creek but it wasn’t really our speed. Nevertheless, it was still good to have a point of comparison for the other wineries we visited.

2. The Down-to-Earth Boutique: Rockford

Rockford was my favorite winery in the Barossa Valley and probably in Adelaide. It was a small boutique winery with an intimate cellar door.

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I adored Rockford’s 2012 Alicante Bouchet, which is a nice young but flavorful red. The staff also showed us around the vineyard, and we got to see Rockford’s traditional equipment.

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I enjoyed our visit to Rockford the most in Barossa Valley. The staff was knowledgeable and willing to answer all of my silly questions. Plus, the wine was excellent.

3. Finally Good Fortified Wines: Seppeltsfield

I had never really been a fan of dessert wine. That is until we visited Seppeltsfield, which had a great variety of fortified wines.

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It became apparent to me that I had only previously had bad dessert wines. The fortified wines at Seppeltsfield were sweet, but not sickeningly sweet, just sweet as a dessert wine should be. I would have loved to have purchased a couple of bottles but we wouldn’t have been able to finish them during our few remaining days in Oz and New Zealand wouldn’t allow us to bring them in.

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Seppeltsfield changed my mind about dessert wines, and I highly recommend it for a tasting.

4. Underwhelming Wines: Lehmann

Lastly, we visited Lehmann in Barossa Valley. We were running short on time, and it was the only winery that we could reach in time before all of the wineries closed.

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Since we visited Lehmann due to proximity and timing, I was not surprised to find the wines to be quite lackluster. None of the wines stood out to me.

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I would skip Lehmann if you come to Barossa Valley.

Prior to visiting McLaren Vale, I researched the boutique wineries that we should visit. My research came up with four boutique wineries.

5. Red Wine Converter: Willunga Creek

Mr. Selfish and I enjoyed Willunga Creek the most out of the wineries in McLaren Vale. It wasn’t just because there were three adorable Welsh Corgis in the front either. The gentlemen pouring us wine was quite gregarious, and the wine was very tasty.

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We purchased a bottle of Willunga Creek’s 2011 Black Duck Merlot, which is referred to as the red wine converter since it converts those who only drink white wines into drinking reds. It was quite light and tasty.

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If you’re in McLaren Vale, I would definitely stop by Willunga Creek for some good conversation and tasty wines.

6. Downtown and Small: Minko

We then visited Minko, which is located downtown and has a very small cellar door. Minko is known for its sparkling merlot, which we tried and liked. It wasn’t as tasty as some of the other red sparklings we had sampled previously though.

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Minko was a cute little winery and is worth a stop for the sparkling merlot, as well as all of the fresh food being sold at the cellar door.

7. Love the Puritan Shiraz: Battle of Bosworth

We then stopped at Battle of Bosworth, which has a fun name and is set among beautiful vineyards. This winery is known for its Puritan Shiraz, which is a red wine often compared to the young Beaujolais wines. Since we love Beaujolais, we figured we would stop by for a taste.

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The Puritan Shiraz did not disappoint, and Mr. Selfish and I walked away with a bottle. It was a fun red that was very soft but still flavorful. I highly recommend stopping by the Battle of Bosworth just for the Puritan Shiraz.

8. Cheap is Cheap: Foggo Wines

Lastly, we visited Foggo, which is known for its Sparkling Grenache, as well as the pricing of its wines.

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Unfortunately, we didn’t find any of the wines at Foggo to suit our palate. But they were sure cheap! Unless you’re looking to buy a lot of wine at a low price, I probably wouldn’t visit Foggo.

At the end of our wine tour in Adelaide, we had four bottles of wine that we had to drink during our four days in Melbourne, which is our last stop prior to New Zealand. It was a hard task but Mr. Selfish and I were up for it!

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The first bottle is from the MONA museum in Hobart. Then, we have the Merlot from Willunga Creek, the Puritan Shiraz from Battle of Bosworth, and the Alicante Bouche from Rockford. After trying them all again, I must say that I liked the Puritan Shiraz and the Alicante Bouche the most.