As the festival season approaches, gig guides are filling up with great local and touring acts to check out. And where better to see a live show than at a vineyard with lush vines, open spaces and plenty of wine.
Words: Alexis Buxton-Collins
Lake Breeze, Handpicked Festival
In just six years, Langhorne Creek’s Handpicked has grown from a small event for family and friends to a 6000-capacity festival with huge headliners from across the country. This year the line-up includes Amy Shark, John Butler and Missy Higgins among the eight acts, and there’s a lot to enjoy beyond the music.
Set among ancient redgums and 50-year-old vines, there’s plenty of space to spread out a picnic blanket and pick up a hamper from Gourmet Platter Co (or choose from the 20 plus food trucks). Or visit The Lane, a space dedicated to local artists where you can make sure you look the part with flower crowns, vintage clothing, sunglasses, or even a henna tattoo
And best of all, you can camp for the night with around 2000 of your new friends. That means you can safely enjoy a few Lake Breeze wines (or the summery creations from the Cocktail Forest) before meandering back home through Langhorne Creek and the Fleurieu Peninsula on Sunday.
Serafino, Wine Machine
For those who like to let their hair down and party, Wine Machine returns to its original home by the lake at Serafino this year. Celebrate the start of summer at the picturesque McLaren Vale winery and bring your dancing shoes for a huge line-up that includes plenty of highlights like Jungle Giants, Bag Raiders and a Hayden James DJ Set. And of course the time travelling Hot Dub Time Machine will curate a soundtrack of party jams that spans every era of music and lets you dance your way through the decades.
In between sets, you’ll be able to sample a range of local food vendors and if you haven’t had a chance to visit the newly renovated cellar door, it’s the perfect opportunity to enjoy a selection of wines that showcase the Maglieri family’s Italian origins.
Kellermeister, Christmas & New Year Twilight Tastings
If you’d rather escape the crowds, there’s plenty of space to lounge on the extensive lawn area or under the verandah at Kellermeister’s cellar door. Between Christmas and New Year’s you can listen to local musician Luka Poulain’s chilled out guitar and vocals while you take in the stunning views across the valley and towards the Barossa Ranges. As the name implies, the sessions go until 7pm so you can watch the valley slowly suffuse with a golden glow before sunset. At the same time, work on your own inner glow from the tastings, which will include the new vintage of the Wild Witch (the 2015 vintage was recently named best shiraz in the world at London’s International Wine Challenge).
It’s one of the few cellar doors that will open on Boxing Day, and as well as wood oven-fired pizzas on 26 and 27 December, there’ll be three types of local produce platters (cheese, smoked meat and smoked salmon) available every day.