The annual celebration of red varietals welcomes newcomer Watkins Family Wine as well as featuring many Adelaide Hills stalwarts.
You’ll fall for the Adelaide Hills at Winter Reds 2021
“It’s always fun on the first, there’s no other feeling like it,” says Jo Watkins.
This year will be the first time Jo’s winery, Watkins Family Wine, will appear at Adelaide Hills wine festival Winter Reds, after launching their label in October last year.
The winery will host a Winter Reds event dubbed ‘Trial by Moonlight’, which joins the roster of 78 other events happening across the region from 23 to 25 July.
For Trial by Moonlight, Jo has brought on chef Glen Carr, whose CV includes Auge Restaurant, to design a five-course degustation to be paired with Watkins wines.
“Because we’re so new, everything’s a first for us, this is our first Winter Reds festival and it’s our first ever degustation,” says Jo.
“Glen and Aaron Martin are two names are quite well known in the hospitality scene and the fact they wanted to partner with us made us feel very special.”
Winter Reds’ theme for the 2021 festival is ‘What’s your red?’, which has served as inspiration to Glen and the Watkins Family Wine team.
Wineries across the region will showcase the diversity of reds grown in the Adelaide Hills, and Trial by Moonlight will offer a range of varietals to cater to all wine lovers.
Following last year’s muted edition of Winter Reds, Jo says wineries across the region are preparing to offer their guests a levelled-up wining and dining experience.
“I know it’s a bit taboo to talk about COVID sometimes, but we are so incredibly lucky that we have the ability to be attending festivals and I think the wineries have really taken that in their stride,” she says.
“Not only are there more wineries on board this year, but everyone has stepped it up which is fantastic to see.”
Jo says “flat-landers” can expect to appreciate the Adelaide Hills for more than just its cooler climate, as winter sees the region transform, especially when paired with the fire, red wine and the rustic fare of Winter Reds.
“As soon as the leaves drop in autumn, I think the hills just become such a cosy and romantic area, and I think that lends itself really well to drinking wine,” says Jo.
“The Winter Reds festival will really allow for people to just see something different and enrich themselves in what the Adelaide Hills has to offer.”
Trial by Moonlight at 29 Grants Gully Road, Chandlers Hill on the 23 & 24 of July. To purchase tickets, click here.
As we mentioned, there are more than 70 events happening throughout the Adelaide Hills for Winter Reds, so we’ve rounded up a few of our favourites.
Whether you’re a wine novice or a cork dork, there’s something on offer to satisfy everyone.
Friday, 23 July will see Saint & Scholar’s Grünthal Ski Lodge at Maximilian’s put a winter spin on the discothèque, as Skin Contact takes centre stage to pair an evening of wine drinking with dancing to foxy classics.
If you’re looking for a warmer of a weekend activity, the lodge will also be open Saturday, 24 and Sunday, 25 July in an event set to boast its German heritage.
Maximillian’s will be slinging Bratwurst hotdogs and cinnamon doughnuts as you sit around a fire pit and bask in live music and DJ’s.
ONE STOP SHOP
Dubbed “Winter Reds – One Stop Shop”, The Adelaide Hills Wine Bar will be hosting a troupe of boutique wineries in CatlinWines, XO Wine Co, Vella Wines and Five Acre Wines.
This non-ticketed, family-friendly event will also have local artisan maker stalls, food trucks and live music.
Winter Reds – One Stop Shop will be held at 62 Mount Barker Road on Saturday, 24 July.
In an event you’ll have to ‘sea’ to believe (sorry), Hahndorf’s Landhaus Estate will show you exactly what seafood you should be pairing with your favourite red drop.
The sustainable seafood fare event is non-ticketed and will offer a selection of wines to accompany everything from scallop pie to the humble fish and chips.
Seafood & Eat It, Sea Red & Drink It! will be held at 102 Main Street, Hahndorf on 24 & 25 July.
Tell your parents you won’t be making it to the Sunday roast, as Wicks Estate winemaker Adam Carnaby will be hosting a modern Asian degustation with a twist at Wick’s Woodside location on Sunday, 25 July.
Joining Adam will be Asian-fusion big-names The Vermillion Table, from the kitchens of Concubine, Gin Long and Bai Long, as you immerse your senses in this eight-course premium wine matched feast.
A LONG lunch… with friends from Concubine, Gin Long & Bai Long will be held at 29 Riverview Road, Woodside on 25 July. To purchase tickets, click here.