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The Best McLaren Vale Wineries and Cellar Doors 2019

Pristine ocean views, exceptional wine blends, an abundance of new varieties… what’s not to love about the birthplace of the SA wine industry? Take a tour of the best McLaren Vale wineries and cellar doors for 2019 with this guide from Wine Selectors.

Home to some of the world’s oldest grapevines and with over 80 cellar doors and vineyards accessible just 45 minutes from Adelaide, McLaren Vale is a wine-lovers dream. Nestled between the Mount Lofty Ranges and the beaches of Gulf St Vincent, this region is the gateway to the stunning Fleury Peninsula, evocative of the stunning coastline around Lisbon, Portugal.

This warm, Mediterranean-style climate and proximity to the sea goes a long way to explaining the fantastic range of Spanish, Italian and Portuguese varieties on offer throughout the region. Alongside the deservedly celebrated Tempranillo, Zinfandel, Sangiovese, Vermentino, Fiano and Touriga Nacional varieties on offer, a sense of adventurism abounds in the countless alternative varieties and superior red wine blends coming from the region, with something new to discover at every winery and cellar door.

Trent Mannell, Wine Selector’s Tasting Panellist and Wine Show Judge is effusive in his love for McLaren Vale region. “It’s a region where the vines meet the sea, so it has a unique coastal vibe and the wines reflect the influence of the maritime climate. The cellar doors are so peaceful; it’s the most tranquil wine region I know.”

Read on for Wine Selector’s picks for the best McLaren Vale wineries and cellar doors for 2019, and discover more about the wines you can explore in our McLaren Vale region guide.

The Best McLaren Vale Wineries

Hither & Yon

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Built from the soil up and lovingly curated by a truly invested team, Hither & Yon celebrates not just the rolling nature of the region, but the easy-going nature of the Brothers Leask and this family-and-friend run business. Their cellar door – originally an 1860s Willunga butcher’s shop – retains its local slate flooring and limestone walls, yet has been refreshed to reflect the artisanal vibe of a vine to table sensibility. With wine tastings, cheese platters, and a fireplace to kick back and savour a fine Shiraz, Grenache, Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Petit Blanc or Nero D’Avola (among others), Hither & Yon emphasises sustainable grape-growing that celebrates the geography and maritime influence of McLaren Vale.

17 High St, Willunga

Open Daily 11 am to 4 pm

Visit the Hither & Yon website

SHOTTESBROOKE

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The Shottesbrooke story actually begins just outside the South Australian hamlet of Myponga, with the quality fruit produced by founder Nick Holmes. A new era for the label began when he purchased a McLaren Flat property, where the Shottesbrooke winery and cellar door were built and some of McLaren Vale’s most exciting wines were brought to life. Nestled amongst the company vineyards with magnificent view to the surrounding Mount Lofty Ranges, the cellar door offers a diverse range of excellent wines made at the winery right next door, presented by a passionate and experienced staff. You can make a day of it with an all-inclusive full-day tour, and take a journey into the heart of the winemaker’s craft; or, stroll through the estate vineyards for a three-course lunch prepared by the award-winning chefs at The Currant Shed, best enjoyed alongside a hand selected range of matched Shottesbrooke wines.

101 Bagshaws Road, McLaren Flat

Open Daily 10 am to 4.30 pm, Sat – Sun 11 am to 5 pm

Visit the Shottesbrooke website

D’ARENBERG

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d’Arenberg is a McLaren Vale institution with d’Arry Osborn and his son Chester, Chief Winemaker, renowned for their fantastic Shiraz and Grenache. Formerly housed in a beautifully restored 19th-century homestead, the d’Arenberg cellar door has now soared into a bold new era with the daring d’Arenberg Cube, a multi-venue experience that is home to masterclasses, à la carte or degustation dining, as well as a contemporary art museum. You can even play winemaker for the day, blending and bottling your own wine. And, of course, you can also explore an extensive range of quality wines, guided by their always entertaining cellar door staff. Learn more about The Cube in our interview with Chester, and explore The d’Arenberg Experience at their website.

Osborn Rd, McLaren Vale

Open Daily 10 am to 5 pm

Visit the d’Arenberg website

BATTLE OF BOSWORTH

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Want to learn how organic wines are cultivated? Then make sure to stop by this charming cellar door and sample the wares of boutique winemaker Joch Bosworth, who took the reins of the family business back in 1995 and drove a return to the old ways. Such pride in tradition is suitably reflected in quality examples of Shiraz, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Touriga Nacional. Located just outside the historic township of Willunga, the cellar door occupies a restored 1850s stable with views over the vineyards and west to St Vincent.

92 Gaffney Rd, Willunga

Open Daily 11 am to 5 pm

Visit the Battle of Bosworth website

HUGH HAMILTON WINES

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A sweeping, 270-degree view of one of McLaren Vale’s signature vineyards awaits you at the Hugh Hamilton Wines cellar door, a must-stop for anyone visiting the region. Recognised as Australia’s oldest wine family, the passion and knowledge of the cellar door staff is on clear display and the range on offer is exceptional with everything from a classic Shiraz through to the exciting new blends and alternative varieties the region is so rightfully famous for. Our tip? Book a hosted wine and cheese flight of their single vineyard wines for a trip you’ll always savour.

94 McMurtrie Rd, McLaren Vale

Open Daily 11 am to 5 pm

Visit the Hugh Hamilton website

GEMTREE WINES

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Gemtree Wines operates on a simple philosophy – minimal intervention in the winemaking process, and a more eco-conscious farming system. The result is a range of wines which are powerful, concentrated, and expressive of the true characteristics of each grape variety and the region. The relaxed and unassuming outlook created by husband and wife duo Mike and Melissa permeates every aspect of the cellar door experience, which features views all the way to the sea from their outdoor verandah. Sample their fantastic wines while learning more about organic and biodynamic farming practices, and make sure you take the time to explore the 10-hectare wetland eco-trail while you’re there.

167 Elliott Rd, McLaren Flat

Open Daily 11 am to 5 pm

Visit the Gemtree website

LECONFIELD & RICHARD HAMILTON WINES

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Looking for the perfect place to sample Richard Hamilton’s Estate, Single Vineyard Reserve and select Leconfield wines? Then set a course for Leconfield cellar door, where you can appreciate the natural qualities imparted by the family-owned vineyards in McLaren Vale as well as the vines surrounding the cellar door itself. With its sweeping lawns and verandahs plus generous platters of local regional food on offer, Leconfield will delight the senses. Find out more about Chief Winemaker Paul Gordon’s process in our Wine Selectors Q&A.

439 Main Rd, McLaren Vale

Open Daily 10 am to 5 pm

Visit the Leconfield & Richard Hamilton Wines website

SERAFINO

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Steve (Serafino) Maglieri arrived in Adelaide in 1964 as a teenager from Italy with little more than a passionate dream to make great wine. After many highs and a few lows in the wine industry, eventually the Serafino label emerged and the Maglieri family was able to craft their own piece of paradise amongst the gumtrees of their McLaren Vale winery. The warm, friendly and familiar ethos of Serafino is evident in the cellar door, charming restaurant, and four-star accommodation, making it the perfect place to position yourself for a weekend getaway… the better to enjoy Serafino’s great range of Italian and alternative varieties such as the Bellissimo series of Vermentino, Fiano and Montepulciano through to reserve Grenache and Shiraz.

Kangarilla Rd, McLaren Vale

Open Daily 10 am to 4:30 pm

Visit the Serafino website

OLIVER'S TARANGA

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Contained within an original 1850s stone worker’s cottage built by the first generation of the Oliver family, Oliver’s Taranga cellar door retains both an authentic charm and a deserved reputation for exceptional wines. In addition to its excellent range of Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon you’ll also find small batch wonders like Fiano, Grenache, Mencia and Sagrantino to delight the palate. Planning a visit? Be sure to check their events page before you go, as the venue hosts many unique food and wine events to enjoy, including monthly Porchetta Parties, Twilight Pizza events, and even pop-up happenings in Adelaide. 

246 Seaview Rd, McLaren Vale

Open Daily 10 am to 4 pm

Visit the Oliver’s Taranga website

CORIOLE

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Set within sight of the sea amidst the undulating McLaren Vale hills, this small boutique cellar door can be found in an old 1860s ironstone barn, surrounded by the Coriole Estate vineyards which are celebrating their 50th birthday this year. Famous for its pioneering efforts in introducing alternative varieties to the region – most notably Sangiovese in 1985 and the first Australian Fiano in 2005 – Coriole’s range has an impressive diversity that includes Sangiovese, Barbera, Picpoul, Nero d’Avola, Fiano, as well as exquisite examples of the classic Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon varieties. If you’re lucky, you may even get to sample a rare single vineyard Shiraz, or perhaps a Mourvedre. It’s only a small cellar door so if you’re travelling in a group of eight or more you will need to book.

Chaffeys Rd, McLaren Vale

Mon – Fri 10 am to 5 pm, Sat – Sun 11 am to 5 pm

Visit the Coriole website

PENNY'S HILL

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This charming winery, set on the stunning grounds of the historic Ingleburn property, is the perfect place to stop for a long lunch during your travels through McLaren Vale. Two Forks recipient Chef Tom Boden has crafted a menu celebrating the artisan food producers of the region at the Kitchen Door Restaurant, presenting classic meals prepared in contemporary style. After your meal, wander through the Red Dot Gallery or soak up the farm yard atmosphere and chat with the chooks. The talents of celebrated Winemaker Alexia Roberts, winner of 2016’s World’s Best Cabernet at the Concours International des Cabernets in France, are on fine display with elegant, fruit-driven, single-vineyard estate-grown wines that display the very best qualities of McLaren Vale wines.

281 Main Rd, McLaren Vale

Open Daily 10 am to 5 pm

Visit the Penny’s Hill website

MORE INFORMATION

Before visiting McLaren Vale, be sure to check out the official McLaren Vale region website or stop by the McLaren Vale & Fleurieu Visitor Information Centre in the centre of town. Or, if you’d like to sample some of the wineries listed in this guide prior to setting out, explore our wide selection of McLaren Vale wines and learn more about the wineries listed here in our Meet the Makers section.

With the Wine Selectors Regional Release program, you'll experience a different wine region each release with all wines expertly selected by our Tasting Panel. Plus, you’ll receive comprehensive tasting notes and fascinating insights into each region. Visit our Regular Deliveries page to find out more, and explore more great wine regions with our Wine Selector’s Cellar Door Guides. Enjoy!

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The Best Margaret River Wineries and Cellar Doors
Celebrated British wine critic, Jancis Robinson once remarked that " Margaret River  is the closest thing to paradise of any wine region I have visited in my extensive search for knowledge." Not only does it combine all the best qualities for viticulture and produce sublime  Chardonnay  and  Cabernet Sauvignon , but it's also downright beautiful! To help plan your trip to this internationally renowned wine region, we've selected a collection of Margaret River wineries that provide the best cellar door experience, plus we've included a handy interactive map down below. Wine Selectors Tasting Panellist, winemaker, and wine show judge,  Dave Mavor , is certainly a fan of the region, "Margaret River blows me away every time with the incredible quality of its wines."  "One of the reasons for its success is the Mediterranean-style climate, which means it doesn't experience extremes in summer and winter, ensuring superb growing conditions. With the addition of thorough viticulture and winemaking practices, you have what it takes to produce consistently high-quality fruit, resulting in many award-winning wines," Dave explains. Margaret River Wineries List Arima
Located down a dirt road in the northwest of Margaret River's famed Wilyabrup sub-region, Arimia is home to a small organically farmed vineyard, kitchen garden, and a cellar door restaurant. There's a great range of wines available on their tasting menu that encompass both Margaret River classics and emerging alternative styles to enjoy while you learn more about organic farming and winemaking practices. The excellent restaurant has a fantastic menu with ingredients sourced and produced on the property for a complete estate experience. 242 Quininup Road, Yallingup -  View on our Margaret River Map Open Daily 10 am to 5 pm www.arimia.com.au Swings & Roundabouts Cellar Door and Taphouse
Swings & Roundabouts is arguably the hippest winery in W.A. with a great restaurant, blaring music, cosy open fires, and an expansive lawn to spend an afternoon in the Sun. The wood fired pizza and rustic Mediterranean-inspired restaurant menu matches perfectly with the excellent range of wines available to sample. And, if you're based in the township of Margaret River during your stay, then make sure you also visit the Swings & Roundabouts Taphouse. This funky restaurant and bar is the perfect place to unwind after a busy day visiting the Margaret River wineries with a spectacular range of wines available to sample on tap. Yes, you read that correctly. You can learn more about some of the  benefits of keg wine here  . 2807 Caves Rd, Yallingup -  View on our Margaret River Map Open Daily 10 am to 5 pm Tap House 85 Bussell Hwy, Margaret River Open Daily 12 pm to late Visit the Swings & Roundabouts website Hay Shed Hill
Located in the picturesque Willyabrup Valley, Hay Shed Hill produces single vineyard wines that express the character of this outstanding Margaret River site. There are over 25 wines available to sample, from classic Margaret River Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay through to emerging alternate varieties such as Malbec and  Tempranillo   - all are perfectly matched to the Mediterranean tapas available in the Rustico at Hay Shed Hill restaurant. And, if you're a cheese lover then you're in luck, as Rustico have what might be the largest selection of European cheeses in the South West! 511 Harmans Mill Rd, Wilyabrup  View on our Margaret River Map Open Daily 10 am to 5 pm Visit the Hay Shed Hill website Howard Park
Less than five minutes drive from Margaret River's famous beaches, the Howard Park cellar is the perfect place to unwind after an early morning surf or swim. This striking modern cellar door is set on 138 hectares of native bushland, surrounded by the region's iconic marri and karri trees and spacious lawns where you are able to borrow a blanket or bocce set and enjoy a glass or bottle of wine under the West Australian sun. You'll have the unique opportunity to sample and compare wines from both Margaret River and  Great Southern  wine regions, with excellent wines featuring grapes sourced from Howard Park's four individual estate vineyards. 543 Miamup Rd, Cowaramup  View on our Margaret River Map Open Daily 10 am to 5 pm Visit the Howard Park website Killerby Wines
Nestled on the ridge of Yallingup and only 10 minutes from Dunsborough, the Killerby Wines cellar door is home to picturesque views over the Wildwood Valley on Caves Road. A visit here will allow you the chance to immerse yourself in the history of the family in the region over the past 90 years and an opportunity to taste the premium range of award winning wines. With sweeping views across the vineyards and Wildwood Valley, the Tuscan style Cellar door and terrace is the perfect setting to bring a picnic lunch and enjoy our wines on the large lawn area. 2715 Caves Rd, Wilyabrup -  View on our Margaret River Map Open Daily 10 am to 5 pm Visit the Killerby website Hamelin Bay Wines
Nestled on a hilltop amongst a beautiful vineyard with views over an idyllic lake, sits the Hamelin Bay winery and cellar door. Hamelin Bay 's wines are estate grown and, with 11 Royal Show Trophies and medals too numerous to count, they have built a reputation for producing wines of distinction. Sample their spectacular wines accompanied by a platter of local produce, while you relax outdoors on the verandah. McDonald Rd, Karridale -  View on our Margaret River Map Open Daily 10 am to 4:45 pm Visit the Hamelin Bay website Redgate Wines
Bill Ullinger, an ex-Lancaster Bomber pilot, established Redgate in 1977. As for the name Redgate, in keeping with Bill's character, there was once a property close by that had a reputation for producing very good moonshine. In recognition of the service that this farmer offered the community, Bill named his property and wines after the infamous red gate at the entry of that property. This picturesque cellar door is the perfect place to sample the exquisite (and highly awarded) Cabernet Sauvignon and oaked Chardonnay. 659 Boodjidup Rd, Margaret River -  View on our Margaret River Map Open Daily 10 am to 4:30 pm Visit the Redgate Wines website Credaro
Cesar Credaro's first foray into winemaking was to provide wines for the family table and those of his friends family's after arriving in Margaret River in 1922. 90 years later, Cesar's legacy of sharing excellent wines with friends and family, lives on at the charming Credaro Family Estate . With sweeping views across the vineyards and Wildwood Valley, this Tuscan style cellar door and terrace is the perfect setting to bring a picnic lunch and enjoy our wines on the large lawn area. 2715 Caves Rd, Yallingup -  View on our Margaret River Map Open Daily 10:30 am to 5 pm Visit the Credaro website Vasse Felix
When Dr. Tom Cullity planted the first Cabernet vines in 1967 at Vasse Felix, Margaret River arguably got its start as a premium wine region. Today, this extraordinary estate and architectural marvel of a winery is a must visit during any trip to the region. With a famed restaurant, cellar door, wine lounge and a gallery brimming with one of the nation's largest private art collections, Vasse Felix is a destination in and of itself. Make sure to book one of the behind the scenes winery tours, that operate during the week, to learn more about how premium Australian wines are crafted. 2715 Caves Rd, Yallingup -  View on our Margaret River Map Open Daily 10 am to 5 pm Visit the V asse Felix website Margaret River Winery Map Planning a trip to Margaret River? Download our interactive Margaret River winery map. To save on your browser or device,  click here. For more information on visiting Margaret River, be sure to visit the official  Margaret River region website  or stop by the Margaret River Information Centre in the centre of town. But, if you'd like to sample some of the wineries listed in this guide before you visit, explore our wide selection of Margaret River wines and find out more about the wineries listed here in our  Meet the Makers section  . And, with the Wine Selectors Regional Release program   , you'll experience a different wine region each release with all wines expertly selected by our Tasting Panel, plus you'll receive comprehensive tasting notes and fascinating insights into each region. Visit our  Regular Deliveries  page to find out more!
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Coonawarra - the Cult of Consistency
Words by Nick Ryan on 29 Sep 2017
While other Australian regions may have caught up to Coonawarra in the red wine stakes, the commitment of this region’s passionate locals will see it shine well into the future. Coonawarra is an enigma wrapped in a red dirt riddle. We all think we know Coonawarra because it seems like it’s always been there. When you set out on the journey to discover Australian wine, Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon is one of the first checkpoints you reach, a foundation stone for building an understanding of what this country can do with its vineyards. But does familiarity breed contempt? And where do the classics sit when the market seems obsessed with the cool cutting edge? Is it enough to continually do a few things well when the consumer has the all the loyalty of a stray cat and the attention span of a goldfish? Is Coonawarra’s glorious past impeding the region’s push into a bright future? A famously close-knit community
Coonawarra is a place where many of the names on the bottles have been there for generations. While its biggest players are corporate, Wynns most notably, the majority of producers are family owned, including names like Balnaves and Bowen Estate. Vineyards are tightly held and rarely change hands and its comparatively small size – just 5,500 ha – ensures the region’s prized fruit is all taken up by those domiciled there and virtually nothing is available for winemakers from other regions to have a crack at making Coonawarra wine seen through outsider eyes. There are obviously benefits in a strong sense of community. “There’s certainly a combined sense of purpose,” says Peter Bissell from Balnaves, a transplanted Kiwi and relative newcomer, having arrived in Coonawarra in 1989. “There’s also a long collective memory of winemaking traditions going back to the 1950s and beyond, that gives us as winemakers a real sense of carrying on something important.” Dan Redman is as Coonawarra as they come, having joined the family business exactly a hundred years after his great-grandfather made his first wine from grapes grown in the famed terra rossa soil. It’s been his nursery, his playground, his backyard, his home. “To me, this community is a source of great friendships and some pretty good times with people I’ve known all my life,” he says. “One of the real strengths of this place is the shared common goal we all have to promote Coonawarra. There’s a united front when any of us talk about the region.” But Redman is not totally blinkered. “It’s probably fair to say that some of the ideas and thinking from the wider wine world might take a bit longer to get here than some other places,” he admits.
That’s pretty understandable in a way. You can’t talk about Coonawarra without considering its physical isolation. It’s halfway between Adelaide and Melbourne, but not on the direct route to either. New blood flows through Coonawarra the way it does through a statue. Kate Goodman is uniquely placed to comment on the region’s uniquely singular focus. She makes wine under her own label in the Yarra Valley and was appointed consultant winemaker at Coonawarra’s Penley Estate a couple of years ago. “The Yarra is vast with a huge diversity of sites, while  Coonawarra is a small area with a tight focus on carefully defined vineyards,” she says. “I’m not saying one is better than the other, I’m just saying the diversity of the Yarra’s landscape lends itself more easily to a diversity of winemaking approaches.” Goodman relishes the opportunities Coonawarra presents, and has quickly learned what makes the place special. “Dear God, the fruit this place can produce is just bloody sensational,” she says. Evolution, not Revolution
​ It would be wrong to see Coonawarra as a wine region trapped in amber. There has been significant change over the last decade, but those changes have been subtle and have taken place within the well-established framework of the classic Coonawarra style. Most notable of these has been the widespread reworking of the region’s vineyards, a sustained exploration of how best to manage its most valuable assets with fruit quality the singular aim. This focus certainly underpins winemaker John Innes’ philosophy and, he says, he spends time in his vineyard, “continually tasting the fruit for optimal flavour and textural ripeness.” The minimal pruning regimes that dominated the region in the 1980s have given way to practices more conducive to vine health and various flirtations with both over and under ripeness have given way to a more comfortable middle ground. A wider clonal mix is now present in the region’s vineyards, offering new angles from which to view the Coonawarra Cabernet picture we think we know so well. Coonawarra has so far been immune from invasion by hipsters who harvest while howling at the moon, so remains untouched by the outer extremes of winemaking methodology, but that doesn’t mean the place is all ‘set and forget’ when it comes to winemaking approach. But it’s all about refinement rather than re-invention. Concrete fermenters are back in vogue, larger format oak and softer fruit handling are helping shape red wines that are more medium-bodied and supple, yet still retain the region’s famed capacity for ageing. Nick Zema explains it best. “We’re always looking to improve, but we never forget what this place has always done best,” he says. “You can go chasing market trends and change up everything you do, but by the time those changes come through to the wine in the bottle, the market’s moved on and you’re just chasing your tail. When you’ve got something that’s considered a classic, you just keep polishing it.” Looking into the future
So where does the famed terra rossa fit in the Australian landscape? The status Coonawarra once had as arguably Australia’s finest red wine region has slipped – more through the competition catching up than Coonawarra going backwards – but the core of what has made this place great remains and, if anything, the future looks brighter now than it has for a long time. Coonawarra’s biggest challenge is making the market fall in love with Cabernet again, and with the ongoing refinement of the style – small, considered steps rather than radical reinvention – the region’s winemakers are set to take that challenge on. Once that’s been done, the story of the region’s outstanding Shiraz, hugely underrated Chardonnay, and affinity with other members of the Bordeaux brotherhood like Cabernet Franc can be told, too. It will always be a place of traditions and tightly woven community ties and may that always be the case. In a world that flutters on the fickle winds of fashion, some certainty, classicism and Cabernet Sauvignon can prove to be welcome respite.
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Behind The Vine At Helen's Hill
To celebrate the  Helen's Hill Ingram Road Pinot Noir 2015  being our April Wine of the Month, we caught up with Allan Nalder from  Helen's Hill . What makes the Ingram Road 2015 Pinot Noir so appealing? To answer that I need to take a step back. All of our wines are 100% single vineyard and are all made at my winery. Only fruit that we grow on our vineyard goes into the wines that we make. It's not that we don't trust anyone, it's just that we don't trust anyone. We think this is super important. Come visit and I can take you to the very vines that make the wine you are going to enjoy. Call us "control freaks". I'll take it as a compliment. The  Ingram Rd 2015 Pinot Noir  benefits greatly from this approach. Pristine  Yarra Valley  single vineyard fruit, French oak maturation, careful "hands-off" winemaking and a great vintage all combine to produce a wine that expresses hallmark  Pinot Noir  characteristics. And its price point is extremely compelling. You have over 50 acres of Pinot Noir, what makes you so enthusiastic about this often-difficult grape? You're right, Pinot Noir is a difficult grape to grow and can really only grow well in specific, little tucked away corners of the world. The Yarra Valley, and the little patch of dirt I call home, is one of those places. It also helps to be a bit of a Pinot Noir fanatic. To me, it is one of the most remarkable red wines in the world. I once saw a quote about Pinot Noir growers from a wine writer: "its makers are lunatic-fringe, questers after the holy grail…" - Marc de Villiers wine writer. We fit that mould. Who is the Helen of the hill? We bought the property from Mr. Fraser in the mid 90s. He had owned the pasture land from the early 1950s. The reason he bought the land was because he fell in love with a woman called Helen, who wouldn't marry him unless he owned a farm. True love prevailed and he bought the farm. Sadly, Helen passed away some 6-7 years after their marriage. Mr Fraser never re-married and throughout the property inspection, he recalled many stories of Helen and her time there. From his stories, it was obvious that she had a passion for the land. We share that passion and thought it appropriate to name the vineyard after her. What makes Scott McCarthy a standout winemaker? To be blunt, the fruit. We live by the very old, well used, but absolutely true saying: "great wine is made in the vineyard". The most important decision we make in the winery is deciding when to pick the fruit. The rest of the process is relatively simple. Pristine quality fruit allows us to rely on natural fermentation, minimal filtering and minimal winemaking intervention. Our ethos is not to describe "perfection" as when there is nothing left to add, but rather, when there is nothing left to take away. We feel this is the key to winemaking. Ensure that we do as little as possible so we can deliver mother nature in the bottle. You also  make a range of beers  - why did you decide to go into brewing and what do you think makes a top beer? It gets pretty hot and sweaty picking grapes. Added to that, I ain't getting any younger, so after a big day in the fields a nice, cold craft beer is a perfect tonic. As winemakers and vignerons go, we drink a lot of beer, so it wasn't that hard to come up with the idea of brewing our own. Getting the recipe right, the choice of hops and quality malt is critical and keeping the fermentation process under control. The rest depends on what you like. We serve our brews at Cellar Door and luckily our customers reckon they're pretty tasty. What are the top 3 attractions you'd recommend to a first-time Yarra Valley visitor? The great thing about the Yarra Valley is the diversity. You can visit the  YV Dairy  and sample a variety of cheese, the Chocolate Factory, world class art museum, on-farm produce stores for things such as apples, strawberries, etc, 6 top golf courses, mountain biking, bush trails, historic buildings, micro breweries, gin distillery and of course the odd cellar door and vineyard restaurant. The valley really has a huge range of things to do. Obviously, a great place to start is Helen's Hill. Full al-carte restaurant on top of the hill with sensational views or our Cellar Door and casual dining nestled down in the winery amongst the vines.
Two Blues Sauvignon Blanc 2014
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