Not knowing where we’re going in the Barossa was half the fun on Saturday’s Eat Drink Blog 2012 familitarisation tour.
Keith Hentschke, founder of Hentley Farm has put in a lot of research into choosing the Hentley Farm, an old 100 acre vineyard and mixed farming property on the banks of Greenock Creek in Seppeltsfield to grow and produce bold red wines the area is famous for.
But what do I know about soil conditions and the like for winemaking? All I have to do is sip the wines slowly, savouring the wide open space with the lush green vines shifting with the warm breeze, as Hentley Farm sits in the midst of some beautiful scenery in the Barossa Valley.
And I was most certainly not the only one.
We moved from the outdoors to inside the old farmhouse and while it was fairly tight with over 30 people mingling, it gave us an opportunity to admire a bit of history. Even the restaurant is the elegantly restored stables. Barbara, our Barossa guide shared the South Australian government proposed new legislation, in the form of two Bills, to protect the special character of the Barossa Valley and McLaren Vale.
These crispy rice cracker covered with mushroom floss and bits of fresh snapper went down a real treat. That mushroom floss is a fierce rival to any pork floss I’ve ever tasted, including the ones back home.
And yes, I was not ashamed of taking advantage of its shape during the tasting.
Winemaker Andrew Quinn provided tastings of their Grenache Rose, The Beast Shiraz and The Beauty Shiraz. My preference was for their Beauty Shiraz.
This is the man behind the food at Hentley Farm. Executive chef Lachlan Colwill was adorable! It was very obvious how passionate he was about food and the produce in the area, and I have to give the man and his team props for going vegetarian for a week as a discovery journey.
This little morsel was the bomb! The base was a light as a feather stiff meringue and once in your mouth, melted away and left this rich creamy strawberries and cream flavours.
The chocolate lace popsicles are dotted with salt and Ajwain spice. The Ajwain spice is similar to caraway and cumin, and its flavour lingers longer than the chocolate does. Personally I love it, but I know some people who might not appreciate such a strong flavour.
The restaurant is open Thursday-Sunday for lunch service, with a dinner service on Saturday evenings.
Disclaimer: The Hentley Farm visit was organised as part of the Eat Drink Blog 2012 program.