10 of the best wineries in McLaren Vale

 

The McLaren Vale wine region is often referred to as a place of solace, away from city life. It’s not hard to believe in a state that boasts natural beauty, and it’s almost Italy at your doorstep once you surround yourself with the olive and almond groves that are scattered among the vineyards.

How to get to McLaren Vale?

The McLaren Vale wine region can be reached within just 40 minutes drive from central Adelaide. The urban sprawl of Adelaide hasn’t affected McLaren Vale’s beauty, and therefore the region remains highly historical, with unique McLaren Vale cellar doors and wineries throughout the region. 

 

McLaren Vale Wineries

The McLaren Vale wineries are predominantly located amongst the Gulf Saint Vincent beaches and Mount lofty ranges. The uninterrupted beauty of the region is considered an extraordinary luxury with pristine beaches of the country residing across the McLaren Vale coastline and closeby are some of the region’s best wineries and cellar doors. 

Australia, particularly South Australia's wine industry, was born from the McLaren Vale wine region, and the area is considered to have some of the world's oldest grapevines. Read on to learn about the best wineries set across the McLaren Vale region, restaurants at the wineries with lunch and dinner options and wine tastings.

 

  1. Bec Hardy Wines

Delight your senses with a dining experience at Tipsy Hill. Bec Hardy wines offers a three-course meal that will be guaranteed to please your taste buds. The food at Bec Hardy wines is prepared by the owners, Bec and Richard Hardy themselves. The food is cooked at their private residence in surroundings that have a touch of Tuscany.

They have been in the  wine industry for many years which is highlighted by their many amazing stories. The degustation experience includes pre dinner drinks, and a tour at the vineyard where the restaurant is located. The Pertaringa wine is offered as a vintage tasting option. 

It is guaranteed to leave you feeling satisfied, with a full belly and some new wines to add to your favourites list. 

Bec Hardy Wines McLaren Vale

 

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  1. Geoff Merrill Wines

Geoff Merrill wines were originally produced at various locations across South Australia, including Chateau Reynella and Pirramimma in McLaren Vale, and Peter Lehmann Wines in the Barossa.

Geoff purchased what was the the beautiful, yet run-down Mount Hurtle Winery in 1985. He then restored the property and embarked on his own venture. 

Today the winery is amongst 4 acres of vineyards and picturesque gardens tave a Tuscan charm. The cellar door is fit to produce copious amounts of wine, and is the engine room of the Geoff Merrill Wines. You may even get to see the family of geese hovering at the entrance.

The best-selling wines include the 2016 Cilento Sangiovese, Shiraz, 2013 bush wine shiraz grenache, 2013 cabernet sauvignon. 

 

Geoff Merrill Winery McLaren Vale

  1. Primo Estate

Possibly one of the oldest wineries owned by a family, is  McLaren Vale’s Primo Estate. It’s point of difference stems from the ambience of the cellar doors. 

The taste of the wines reflect their Italian Heritage in the form of a unique blend of grape juices not found in any other wineries. The hardwork and taste represents the estate’s Italian heritage, from the Le Marche region of Italy. 

If you visit Primo Estate, there is the opportunity to taste premium wines and exquisitely prepared platters. In addition to the premium wines, the platter also includes extra virgin olive oil, cheese prepared by Primo Estate, along with fresh local bread.

The primo estate is considered an award-winning winery within the gorgeous McLaren Vale winery region. It is guaranteed to leave you feeling satisfied and pleased with yourself. You’ll definitely be leaving here with a bottle or two!

  1. Shingleback Wine

 

The Shingleback winery cum restaurant offer a four-course meal. The place is lit with a wine tasting heritage room. You get the liberty to choose a bottle of wine, in some cases two. Have lunch whilst enjoying your wine. 

The popular wine dishes include the Shiraz based lamb, and the red wine mousse. Don’t miss out. 

  1. Coriole

The Coriole winery, considered the McLaren Vale Royal winery since 1957, is one of the oldest wineries in the McLaren region. They have been harvesting wine ingredients in the estate since 1860. Wine has been prepared in the Coriole since 1873.

Some of the oldest wines found in the Coriole include the Shiraz and the Shiraz labeled "Claret" - all released under one name Coriole. Most of the vineyard space is usually used in making Shiraz. The plantation is done uniquely in Terra Rosa soils along with limestone.

Other wines grown include the Chenin blank, Cabernet Sauvignon, Grenache, and Mourvèdre. The biggest gambit of the colonial winery features the Sangiovese wine beside the Fiano, barbera, and the Montepulciano. 

The Sangiovese wine is an exquisite collection of the colonial winery for greater than 30 years now. These wineries are extremely sophisticated, and the visiting experience is considered unique, given the McLaren Vale wine and dine option available. 

 

  1. Hugh Hamilton Wines 

The fascinating part about the Hugh Hamilton Wines includes new experiences and great conversations. In addition to exceptional wine tasting, they are known for the unique wines and fantastic service.

Given that the view of the region itself is considered heaven, the winery is located on a range, thereby allowing a 360-degree view of the neighboring wine yards.

All the areas responsible for collecting wine sources are set on a range, and the most popular wines include the Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Shiraz, and Grenache. They also produce Saperavi, Sangiovese, and Tempranillo. 

People often consider this winery to be offering greater service than any other hotel in South Australia. 

  1. Samuel’s Gorge

Samuel’s Gorge winery was established in 2003. The McLaren Vale's Samuel’s Gorge winery is located on the top of a ridge. The winery, if seen from a helicopter, pictures an ocean on one side and the river Onkaparinga national park on the other. 

The Samuel's Gorge winery is famous for being a unique, boutique winery and specialises in preparing batches of red wines. The most common varieties from Samuel's Gorge winery are the Grenache, Mourvedre, Shiraz, and Graciano.

One of the best wines considered at the winery is the Tempranillo. All of these varieties are handcrafted and are a result of extremely hard work.

The entire winery has a relaxed vibe, and the work is considered exceptionally operational. Given that the winery is engaged in a unique production, the staff are dedicated to ensuring none of the previous qualities get disrupted within the ever-growing number of wines produced every day.

  1. Oliver's Taranga 

Wine from Oliver’s Taranga is considered unusual yet delicious. Varieties of wine that you’ll find at the cellar door include Grenache, Shiraz, Vermentino, Fiano, Touriga, Merlot, Sauvignon, Tempranillo, Mencia, and Sagrantino. 

Oliver’s Taranga vineyard prepares wine from their own cultivated premium grapes, making for a unique tasting experience. They also sell grapes grown on their vineyard to other wineries, for example, Wirra Wirra, Penfolds, Seppeltsfield, and Arenberg every year.

They, too are famous for small batches of handcrafted wines and stock both vintage as well as modern wine production. Oliver’s wine and the cultivation of their grapes has been around for 179 years.

This cellar door is considered a great option because of their friendly and welcoming staff accompanied by a unique wine tasting.

Oliver's Taranga Winery McLaren Vale

  1. D’Arenberg

You can’t go to McLaren Vale without taking a glimpse of the d’Arenberg architecture. The winery has been producing wines in McLaren Vale since 1912 and is arguably one of the most well regarded labels. The building also houses a restaurant, wine sensory room and 360 degree video room so there’s plenty to explore while you sip on their wines and take in the view. The view can be seen from the top floor where the tasting room is, accompanied by a number of courses. 

  1. Serafino

Steve (Serafino) Maglieri from Maglieri, Italy,  arrived in Adelaide in 1964 with big dreams to make amazing wines. Today he and his daughter Maria, own 500 acres of estate at the Serafino vineyard in McLaren Vale - impressive! View the panoramic views surrounding the vineyard as you graze at the Serafino Restaurant and cellar door. 

It’s a little touch of Italian paradise nestled amongst the trees in McLaren Vale. Serafino also has four-star accommodation on site if you’d like to stay for the weekend to enjoy the wines and facilities such as a heated swimming pool. You’ll find a range of wines to enjoy from Italian to alternative including the Vermentino, Fiano and Montepulciano as well as the classics like reserve Grenache and Shiraz.

 

View the McLaren Vale experience map

Conclusion

Besides McLaren Vale wineries wine tasting, there are great things to do while visiting the McLaren Vale region. You can take a look at the local markets, go cycling around the Shiraz Trail, visit the local art galleries, have fun while snorkeling at Port Noarlunga, and experience leisure time around the beaches. 

 

The coastlines on the McLaren Vale region are breathtakingly beautiful. Summertime is the best for wine lovers. Enjoy the magnanimous wine festival and paddle along the Onkaparinga River.