After a long day on Wednesday it was just a short hop east out of Adelaide into the hills. This wine area has a very different feel to Barossa and Clare and feels very verdant lush and cooler. As we headed upwards into the clouds, the rain began to fall and we started reaching for the fleeces and waterproofs. However, it was sunny on the other side as we arrived at Tapanappa – home of the Croser family and the acclaimed Tiers vineyard. This is where the famous Petaluma estate was born in 1976 when the legendary Brian Croser chose the Adelaide Hills as a prime site for cool climate viticulture.
As we gathered round the casual tasting room bar, the legend himself – Brian Croser – walked in and delivered a masterclass in terroir, history and top class winemaking. It was a huge honour to spend time with him and to taste his range of Tapanappa wines. Two Chardonnays from the vineyards in eyesight, two Pinot Noirs from Fleurieu and a Cab/ Shiraz and a Merlot/Cab Franc from Wrattonbully. Sensational wines and Brian comprehensively answered a number of inciteful questions.
From Tapanappa we head towards Mount Lofty, the highest point in the Adelaide Hills, where we discovered Mt Lofty Ranges restaurant. This is a highly acclaimed restaurant and we settled into a delicious three course lunch. Aspsaragus salad, mussels, pork two ways, succulent beef and to die for desserts, all washed down with excellent Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir and their late harvest sweetie.
We didn’t want to leave.
Leave we did and found ourselves at Deviation Road winery – specialists in sparkling wine production. Owner Kate Laurie gave us a short talk in the winery and then demonstrated a manual disgorgement – a first for many!
Cellar Door manager Anna Trowse then hosted a very agreeable tasting of their top four sparkling wines.
Another great day – impossible to believe it is our last day tomorrow in South Australia.