South Australia’s Langhorne Creek wine region tends to fly under the radar, being overshadowed by nearby McLaren Vale with its greater number of cellar doors and other venues. Langhorne Creek has just eight cellar doors but that’s part of its charm, along with its proximity to Adelaide (45 minutes) and the superb wine it produces.
The region has a cool maritime climate, cooler than McLaren Vale and the Barossa, and it produces quality Cabernet and Shiraz but also many other varieties, including a good selection of Mediterranean varieties.
Family-owned Bremerton was established by the Willson family over 35 years ago and is one of the region’s leading producers. It’s run by two sisters, winemaker Rebecca Willson and her sister Lucy Willson, who have always impressed us with their ingenuity and dedication to producing quality wines at affordable prices.
Bremerton Wines’ new tasting room, opened last month, represents a $1 million investment, which gives you some indication of what a drawcard it is for the region. Built and partially designed by Adelaide family-owned company, Kennett Builders, it sits alongside Bremerton’s historic 1866 barn.
The restored barn was the cellar door and tasting area for more than 26 years. It will continue to be used for indoor dining, serving their popular lunch menu, including pizza and shared platters, all using local produce. It will also continue to house the David Dridan OAM ‘Barrel Ends’ art collection, and the upstairs space will continue to showcase local artists with exhibitions changing every six weeks.
“Along with the tasting room, we now have a beautiful outdoor area with more seating, which gives visitors a chance to enjoy a glass of wine or local produce platters on the veranda overlooking the lawn or sit on a picnic rug or bean bag,” Lucy said.
Added Rebecca: “We chose materials for the new tasting room and extension that were sustainably sourced, recycled, and repurposed to maintain the integrity, character, and charm of the historic barn building, while also modernising the space for the future.”
Visitors now enter over stairs, down the recycled timber arbour, through big, double timber doors to the spacious and interactive tasting room. Bricks from the original barn were used to create the arbour walkway on entrance, while limestone from the original walls was used in the garden beds and external feature walls.
There are touches from iconic local sites that tie in with the Willson family heritage, including the Kadina railway gate, which is part of the fence, and timber in the arbour, from the replica HMS Buffalo. Wine vats from Hardy’s Reynella and redgum sleepers from the local Wenzel family’s chook pen were also used in door lintels and sills.
Bremerton plans to host ‘Lazy Weekend’ sessions in the new comfortable, relaxing space, with chilled live music, food trucks, and a range of beverages, so that visitors can make a day of it.
New tasting experiences are being released this month, including a tasting plate of fresh produce to match the wine, and special gin tastings. (They also make Small Batch Gin in various flavours.)
“We have additional plans that we look forward to unveiling later in the year, which will include exciting developments to the winery and a distillery,” said Lucy. Watch this space.
If you go:
14 Kent Town Road,
Langhorne Creek SA 5255
Open daily 10am to 5pm
To book a tasting experience: