Metala Flavours of Langhorne Creek
There’s something undeniably special about Langhorne Creek. This unassuming, yet very important wine region is the most densely planted in all of Australia, and one of our best-kept secrets.
Rich river soils, towering gum trees and the cooling ‘Lake Doctor’ breeze from nearby Lake Alexandrina have assisted winemakers in producing outstanding wines for close to 200 years.
Indeed, big names like Wolf Blass, Pepperjack, Jacob’s Creek and McGuigan have sourced their grapes from here for decades. Metala was one of the pioneers of the region, establishing what are now recognised as the oldest family-owned Cabernet vines in the world back in 1891.
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‘Langhorne Creek is a pretty wine unique region,’ says Metala’s chief winemaker, Jim Urlwin. ‘Its climate is influenced by both its proximity to Lake Alexandrina and also its deep alluvial soils; nutrient-rich, washed down and deposited by the Bremer River over time. Lake Alexandrina provides cooling winds which allow the fruit to ripen and develop slowly.’
Langhorne Creek is known (and revered) mostly for its high quality Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon. The richly flavoured, generous Shiraz of the region showcase dark fruit characters, spice and sometimes hints of mint, which is a Langhorne signature. Cabernets are full-flavoured, with complex red berry fruits and chocolate tones, yet elegant with structured palates and fine tannins, and are notably softer and more approachable than Cabernets from other regions.
Metala Vineyards have been perfecting both these varietals for generations, and their benchmark Cabernet Sauvignon has a distinctive character with rich palate-coating textures and layered depth.
‘The deep alluvial soils give the wines great richness and texture,’ continues Jim. ‘These different flavours make blending time a lot of fun. Langhorne Creek wines have a fine tannin structure which makes them immediately approachable, however I find these wines are also amazingly long-lived. I’m often stunned by the vibrancy and liveliness of wines with over twenty years’ age. It’s my aim to ensure Metala continues to produce wines with a purity of fruit and layers of flavour that drink well young, but will last for decades in the cellar.’
But it’s not just the wines that make Langhorne Creek such a special place. There is a true community spirit here among the winemakers.
‘The wines produced here carry a huge amount of passion as real people are prepared to put their names to them,’ says Metala owner Liz Adams. ‘The local community, though small, radiates warmth and a strong sense of togetherness.
This spirit is evident in the many community events and festivals that take place throughout the year. Living in this beautiful, natural environment, only an hour from the CBD is a privilege.’ Family. Community. Fantastic wines. Long may the characters of Langhorne Creek dance across our tongues.
Explore Langhorne Creek’s best at metala.com.au