A Trip to McLaren Vale

I’ve just moved to Adelaide from Perth. For me it’s a new town; I’ve never been here before and have no friends here but while studying the WSET Advanced Certificate and Diploma I learnt a lot about the regions, in particular wine; Clare Valley, Eden Valley, Barossa Valley, Riverland, Adelaide Hills, McLaren Vale, Padthaway, Coonawarra and a few more!

So on weekend number 2 in the state, I was thrilled to be able to head to d’Arenberg in McLaren Vale last weekend.Perfect relaxing chairs at d'Arenberg

I first learnt about d’Arenberg as a Graduate Trainee at Majestic back in 2003 and loved their wines and funky wine labels from the start! Then I was part of the team that helped them launch AFFW (Australia’s First Families of Wine) in 2009 in the UK while they did a road trip around the country. I loved meeting Chester and the other guys. Plus his shirts were pretty cool. And nothing beats meeting the people who are behind the brand. And so I was really excited and so pleased to be able to visit the cellar door now that I am living in Adelaide.

The cellar door comprised of a lovely restaurant with verandah overlooking the country side as well as plenty of outdoor space with chairs (made out of barrels), picnic blankets and boules for those who wanted to have more space. Or in our case, a 2 year old that needed to run around and was entertained with blowing bubbles while we ate our picnic.

Penny at the cellar door and the other staff were all very attentive. With our 2 year old with us, we didn’t try the full list but when I go back, I will try more for sure! Penny was very knowledgeable about the different labels, price points, wine styles. I was very impressed and wish I could have given her more attention. We went away with 10 bottles and stocked up our very empty wine rack. Gifts that you could buy in the cellar door included a pretty cool print of numerous cellar doors, books, caps, wine holders and of course you could buy the wine and sign up to the wine club on offer.

I will also want to return shortly as they are going to open The Cube, a 4 story building that looks incredible! There will be room for offices, a cellar door, a cellar as well as rooms to hire and I believe it will offer space for weddings. Plus the amount of light (with all the windows) will mean it will be an amazing venue; it is the shape of a Rubik’s Cube. Can’t wait to see it!