McLaren Vale has forever been well-known for being a prime winery region in South Australia that makes some of the finest drops of wine for locals and tourists alike to enjoy with a spectacular view. One such winery that I recently had the pleasure of getting acquainted with is Doc Adams Cellar Door.
Owned by husband and wife Doctors Darren and Elizabeth Waters, along with and Viticulturist Adam Jacobs, you can see how the winery got its name in its clever form. Doc Adams has been in the business of creating wines for larger companies in Australia for a long time, with the Doctors families placing all hands on deck with growing grapes, while Adam looked after their vineyards, as well as many other vineyards in the area for 25 years. In 2005, Doc Adams took the step of becoming an independent brand and has put together a space that is minimalist, aesthetically pleasing beyond belief, and delivers quality wine and produce that is locally sourced from within the region.
Outside the cellar door (photo by Fatema Sitabkhan)
No visit to a winery is complete without a wine tasting and that's exactly what we indulged in. The range of wines at Doc Adams is versatile, offering everything from sparkling red and white wine (dry and sweet forms) to festive indulgences that are perfect for the upcoming silly season! I must admit that I found their selection of wines to be unique and almost unheard of. From dry to sweet types of white wine to red wines that have a decent age bracket between 25 - 100 years, there's something to match everyone's diverse palate for fruit-driven wines, which is a speciality of wine where the oak supporting the wines is complemented by the fruity flavours in its ripest form.
In order to get a full picture of their drops, we tried everything from their speciality - Shiraz - to the Tempranillo to Tawny. Ever heard of a sparkling red? Maybe I am a wine novice (I am), but that blew me away, primarily because I am a sucker for sparkling wines. I have never had the stomach for red wine, but this has me intrigued and I can't wait to go back and get a bottle of sparkling red to give it a swirl!
One of the most notable features of the Doc Adams Wines is their labels! Being in a state of evolution, the new range of wines will boast of a gorgeous and colourful array of labels, including the new Tawny Port label by artist Ego Guiotto, which will provide funding towards helping the endangered yellow-tailed black cockatoos, which they share their vineyards with. The premium range labels designed by artist Hogarth will depict some gentleman having an all-night dinner party.
As staff member Matt Johnston explained, Doc Adams Wines opened their cellar door three years ago and was awarded "Cellar door of the year" by the end of the first year.
We put this down to a great team, great relationships with local tour operators, B&B's, and with other wineries in the area. After all, we don't feel that we have competitors in McLaren Vale, instead, we have neighbours in the same industry. We all live and work in the region which allows us to foster good relationships with our neighbouring grape growers. Something that is useful when we may want to swap fruit with each other. Sometimes we may want more of one grape and less of another. Matt Johnston (Sales staff member, Doc Adams Wines)
Giving the delicious drops a swirl (photo by Fatema Sitabkhan)
It's an unwritten rule that wine must always be accompanied with a cheese platter and I'm especially excited to share with you how the cheese platters at Doc Adams works! It follows a very simple and rather enjoyable form of a DIY cheese platter, where you can decide what you'd like on the platter. The pantry is located towards the entrance to the outdoor area and is stocked with all the goodies that will suit anyone and everyone's palates! There are so many wonderful local food providores to choose from, such as Arkwright Olives, Onkaparinga Creamery Cheese, Organic bread from Andy at Happy Foods. For our cheese platter, we had a very interesting and pleasant mix of sweet and savoury, reflecting on the two ladies indulging in it. So, we chose creamy brie, vintage cheddar, black kalamata olives, a pumpkin dip, and prosciutto that effortlessly mixed with chocolate popcorn and dehydrated orange slices dipped in chocolate. We were having the absolute time of our lives, as we sipped on their delicious drops of red and devouring the cheese platter that we were able to put together and was so beautifully plated up by one of the staff members. We also went on a pretty quiet day, so it felt like the winery was booked out for two girls who were simply out for a stunning day of fun, laughs, and sunshine and ended up feeling like we were treated to an exclusive day out in the beautiful wine region of McLaren Vale. We were initially going to seat ourselves in the verandah area, but seeing how they had ample seating spread across their lawns (with umbrellas for shade), we couldn't refuse the fresh breeze and sunshine brightening our day even more.
Our DIY cheese platter (photo by Fatema Sitabkhan)
I would highly suggest giving yourself at least a couple of hours for a wholesome Doc Adams experience and pick a day that involves just the right amount of sunshine so that you can enjoy your food and wine in a comfortable temperature while seating yourself either outside on the lawns or in the shaded verandah. The outdoor area is perfect for small and large groups alike, so why not gather a bunch of your favourite people together for a day trip out at Doc Adams? Delicious wine, make-your-own cheese platters, and spectacular views of the serene vineyard - what more could you ask for?
Absolutely serene and peaceful in the Vale (photo by Fatema Sitabkhan)
Doc Adams Wines offers a family-friendly atmosphere, where adults, children, and even your furry pals can come in and experience the beauty, serenity, and richness of McLaren Vale that can be found in their lush backyard that resides alongside their gorgeous cellar door. With a fine selection of wines and a DIY-style cheese platter to tingle your tastebuds, you will be treated to a view of the McLaren Vale vineyard and a relaxing ambience, a day trip to the winery might just be your answer to temporarily switch off and soak in the magic of this space that is further accentuated by the kind hospitality of their staff members, who work tirelessly to ensure that YOU - the customer - have the best possible day out with your loved one(s).