Child friendly wineries in the Barossa
Loving visiting wineries on the weekend, when time allows, I have visited many in McLaren Vale along with hubby and son. The Barossa Valley is home to some fantastic wineries and great cellar doors which are child friendly I have discovered. Many have wonderful spacious lawns, footballs, open space, toys corner and nearby playgrounds.
Lambert Estate Wines
We headed to Lambert Estate Wines which is a recently built family run winery. Jim Lambert, originally from the States had previously travelled to Australia for work in the 1990’s and was inspired to move to Barossa. Jim and Pam’s son Kirk, left Wisconsin to join them after studying wine making at the University of Adelaide. Kirk and his wife Vanessa are both winemakers, having met at the University of Adelaide. They own 100 acres of land which features 17 different soil types. I really love their Lambert Estate Wines which include the Silent Partner (Cabernet Sauvignon) and The Family Tree (Shiraz).
The stairs on the ground floor lead you up to an open plan room with tasting bench in the centre with the restaurant to one side and the softer furnishings and toy corner on the opposite. In the toy corner there are small child seats and a table. At the back, behind the door, is an open plan art gallery separated from the restaurant. The gallery overlooks the winery below.
I love how the heritage and modern renovations at Kalleske work together. The cellar door which you can access from the high street is just behind the vintage car below. It is such a wonderfully open and light space benefiting from two huge windows with the wooden door in between them.
There is plenty of lawn outdoor space at the back which is enclosed garden dotted with benches and umbrellas. A boules set as well as footy and soccer balls with picnic blankets are available for all to use. We headed here for the Spring Affair in the Barossa back in September last year and I highly recommend visiting this year.
Reading the site, I have learnt that the Kalleske family have been farming and growing grapes since 1853 and the oldest vines is from 1875. Similar to the small producers in Burgundy who used to sell all of their grapes to negociants and now they are starting to make their own, Kalleske also sold grapes for six generations. The winery is now run by the seventh generation family member, Troy Kalleske with his brother Tony. They made the first ‘Kalleske’ wine from the 120 acre vineyard released in 2004. They have now planted Semillon, Chenin Blanc, Viognier, Grenache, Cabernet Sauvignon, Mataro, Petit Verdot, Durif, Shiraz, Tempranillo and Zinfandel.
The Rieslingfreak Cellar Door is based in Tanunda. Bookings are by appointment only and well worth it as you are able to have a personalised tasting with the winemaker or brand manager. John Hughes, winemaker and owner set up Rieslingfreak due to his love of Riesling.
An hour spent with John tasting through his wines, you soon understand more about the story and why he focuses on different styles of Riesling. There is tremendous diversity in the grape and John is so passionate in expressing the soil and climate through his range. The cellar door has been recently restored and is beautiful. There is plenty of space for a child to sit and colour. However, I recommend the playground which is just 50 metres away offering a lot more space for climbing, running and enjoying the scenery. Read more about Rieslingfreak from the blog I wrote for Swanbourne Cellars here.
The cellar door is wide and bright where you are welcomed by such knowledgeable staff. The wines on tasting are fantastic and the huge floor-to-ceiling windows offer magnificent views of the vineyards that are overlooked below.
There is plenty of space here between the couches against the windows and the tasting counter so there is no fee of becoming too crowded here. The black couches at the cellar door enable children to sit quietly and read books, or more realistically, watch the iPad. Either option, it is a wonderful space to enjoy for a tasting.
Turkey Flat Vineyards
The cellar door at Turkey Flat used to be the old Schulz family butcher shop located on the outskirts of Tanunda. The vineyards are from as far back as 1847. You feel a sense of the history when you step into the renovated cellar door. I really love their rosé which is widely available at a number of stores I have found in Adelaide.
At the cellar door, you can taste through their range and for children, they kindly offer grape juice so they can feel involved too. No one wants FOMO (fear of missing out) and the potential consequences that could cause.
Maggie Beer’s Farm Shop
There are plenty of tasty chutneys to try and buy as well as farm products at Maggie Beer’s Farm Shop.
There is a turquoise pond with a resident turtle which makes for good exploring with toddlers. The cafe overlooks this beautiful view. There are also cooking demonstrations and wine tastings on offer. Check the site for details.
Just a few metres away from the Farm Shop is the separate restaurant that looks very enticing. I would recommend leaving the younger children at home with a babysitter/hubby/partner for this one and enjoy the tranquility, foods and wine available.