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Just 30 minutes from Adelaide, up the South Eastern freeway, lies the township of Hahndorf. A tourist destination for local, interstate and overseas travellers, its German history is still present today.

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We began at Hahndorf Hill Winery where Marc Dobson took us through the ChocoVino (wine and chocolate) experience!

We learnt about the origins of chocolate, the cacao tree, and where it’s grown. Biting into a roasted cacao bean, it was crunchy as you’d expect, bitter, an intense flavour but without any of the sweetness that we associate with chocolate.

Hahndorf_2We cleansed our palate with fresh apple and drank sparkling water from Cape Grim, Tasmania, claimed on the label to be “the world’s purest”. Hahndorf_3Marc explained that when tasting wine we use three senses – sight, smell and taste – but when tasting chocolate we use touch and hearing as well.

We tasted two wines, Gruner Veltliner (white) and Shiraz, with three pieces of chocolate, including Amedei from Tuscany – the world’s best and most expensive chocolate!

Hahndorf_4We sipped the wine then tasted the chocolate to see how the flavour developed in the mouth. Everybody has a different experience, but I found the white wine bought out the sweetness of the milk chocolate and the dark chocolate highlighted the dryness of the red wine.

We then headed to the Scott & La Prova winery cellar door in the main street. Luckily the rest of our stops were relatively close by and we could walk between them all. Hahndorf_6We experienced a ‘Tasting Flight’ where we sampled five different wines; four La Prova and one Scott.

Hahndorf_7La Prova means trial or experiment and that’s what they did by growing and sourcing Italian varieties of grapes. This tasting was accompanied by chevre cheese and crackers.

Hahndorf_10What a beautiful and funky location right in the main street of Hahndorf.

Hahndorf_8It was then time for lunch – at Udder Delights! And as mentioned in previous posts – I looooove cheese!

Hahndorf_11We were joined outside on a long, beautifully set table, by owners Sheree and Saul . What a magnificent setting! Overlooking the main street, we heard the incredible story of how Udder Delights came into being and the risks that were taken. The passion behind the business was so clear from our hosts.,

Hahndorf_12We were treated to the most amazing cheese fondue. The fondue pot is first rubbed in garlic and the cheese mixture is 70% cheese (Gruyere and Emmental) and 30% wine. We had fresh crusty bread, pear, cornichons, pickled onions, and cured meats, including kabana and mettwurst. The cheese was rich and gooey and when it was nearly gone, a thick crusty layer developed on the bottom, which we also indulged in! And the Hills Cider Company apple and pear cider paired nicely with the richness of the cheese!

Hahndorf_13Hahndorf_14 After the fondue we sampled some goat’s curd on some freshly baked bread.

Hahndorf_15And then we were in for an amazing treat. A taste of the King Saul blue cheese – Australia’s first raw cow’s milk blue cheese. Just 500g of this retails for $150 and our generous hosts shared some with us. It’s 18 months old and each box is individually numbered. Saul explained to us the arduous process they went through getting this to market and the rigorous testing it goes through to make sure it’s fit for human consumption.

We were served some with home made port, Spanish tortas and dried pear. The King Saul was creamy and crumbly with a strong flavour but not overpowering.

Hahndorf_16 What a truly beautiful lunch with our lovely hosts.

It was then onto the next cellar door, right in the main street of Hahndorf.

Rockbare uses a variety of grapes from different regions. We tried eight from the tasting list, with regions including the Adelaide Hills, McLaren Vale, Coonawarra, Barossa and Langhorne creek. Labels they produce are Rockbare, Barossa Babe and Mojo.

Hahndorf_21The Mojo Chardonnay Pinot Noir and the Mojo Moscato were particular favourites of mine from this visit.

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Hahndorf_20Bendbrook wines and beef have just opened their cellar door in a historical 150-year-old building in the main street, also serving tapas. John Struik greeted us a we tasted six wines, including a sparking red which hadn’t been bottled yet.

LogoThe Bendbrook 2015 ‘Savvy’ Sauvignon Blanc had nice citrus tones.

Hahndorf_22The Bendbrook 2013 Goat Track Shiraz has flavours of rich fruitcake, after being matured in new and older French oak for 15 months.

Hahndorf_24The Bendbrook property is located in Macclesfield, where the vineyards and cattle mingle, after vintage. Our wine tasting was accompanied by a tasting of wagyu patties on crunchy baguettes with seeded mustard. They were very tender and moist and the mustard added a tang.

Hahndorf_23And our final stop in the main street was Somerled cellar door. Lucy Moody explained the history and their connection to the Oakbank horse races, where her great-grandfather raced and won in 1908 on a horse named Somerled. We indulged in a Spanish platter which included Spanish Manchego cheese, crusty bread, local olive oil, sundried wild figlets and housemade anchovy sticks.

Hahndorf_26It’s a family affair with Lucy’s mum serving us the platter and her father, Rob, the winemaker. With over 40 years’ experience working at Penfold’s, Rob knows a thing or two about wine!

I enjoyed a final glass of wine, the Pinot Noir Rose, a beautifully light and refreshing drop.

Hahndorf_27I would like to thank Adelaide Food Central and the Hahndorf Business and Tourism Association for inviting a group of us to spend a day visiting some Hahndorf food and wine operators.

When was the last time you visited Hahndorf? It’s certainly changed since the last time I was there. If you get a chance, spend some time in the Adelaide Hills.  I will be, with the family!

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