March 17, 2023
5 mins Read
Beginning with the ambition of a young couple, an ocean voyage and a treasured vine, Magill Estate has flourished and fortified since its inception in 1844 to become the spiritual home of Penfolds, Australia’s most iconic and deeply admired wine label.
Disembarking on colonial South Australian soil, Dr Christopher and Mary Penfold promptly plunged their vine cutting into their newly purchased land in the foothills of the Adelaide Hills.
As the cutting’s roots anchored into the earth at Magill Estate, so too, did one of the greatest and most enduring winemaking stories in the country.
Although the couple’s intention was initially honed on crafting tinctures, fortified wines and sherries for largely medicinal purposes, demand for their wine soon unfurled into more than a century of success and continues to harvest devotees thanks to the label’s sustained ingenuity and innovation.
Today, a visit to Magill Estate transports guests to a well-tended moment in history, while also showcasing a contemporary cellar door experience in a remarkably curated and naturally charming setting.
A veritable playground for both committed oenophiles and casual sippers, the shiraz-trellised home of Grange lays out a full day’s itinerary for wine lovers to taste, dine and uncover a vast legacy.
Here’s how to spend one perfect day immersing in the Penfolds story.
Less than 15 minutes from the heart of Adelaide, a day trip to Magill Estate is astonishingly easy, even for those on a short trip.
As a distillation of South Australian history and a delicious sample of the area’s winemaking and culinary cultures, if you only spend one day amid the region’s vines, you’d do well to spend it here.
Beginning, of course, with a cup of good coffee and seasonally accented brunch plates at Magill Estate Kitchen. You’ll set yourself up beautifully for a day of wine tasting and wandering.
With appetites entirely accommodated, it’s time to venture deeper into the Penfolds story. The two-hour Ultimate Penfolds Experience begins with a tour of the original Grange Cottage, where founders Dr Christopher and Mary embarked upon their new antipodean life.
You’ll also explore the vineyard and discover the underground cellars of the original winery, learning about the people and practices that set Penfolds on the path to abiding success.
The tour concludes in a private tasting room, where you’re guided through a sampling of the most revered Penfolds drops, including Grange.
Hear the tale of the godfather of Grange, Max Schubert, who spent years (sometimes in secret) refining his project to produce a wine crafted to last, until he eventually struck upon the creation of Australia’s most iconic wine.
Between December and February, Summer Series at Magill Estate will transform the terrace into a wine lounge experience. Relax outdoors on comfortable terrace lounges s with curated tasting flights and wines by the glass served straight from the cellar door.
Unfurl on the comfortable terrace lounges and sample Australia’s most iconic and revered wines, all while taking in views overlooking the vineyards and the Adelaide city skyline. Every Thursday and Friday, Magill Estate Terrace will extend its opening hours until 7pm, so you can settle in for a glass or more of your favourite Penfolds wine.
No doubt all that strolling, learning and unwinding has summoned hunger to the fore once more. Order snacks and food from Magill Estate Kitchen over which you can reflect on your historical surroundings, the tenacity of those who crossed oceans to begin again, and the success that rewards such persistence.
Appetites again sated, now’s your chance to road test a few more classics in an effort to pinpoint your favourite varietal.
Head to the spectacular cellar door overlooking the neat, grape-entwined vineyard for a palate-pleasing journey and to stock your home cellar.
This is also your chance to sip the exclusive Cellar Reserve range, which is only available at the cellar door and online. This rarefied collection will elevate your home cellar with sophisticated drops from sangiovese to shiraz and no doubt become a talking point at future dinner parties.
Now is also your moment to spoil and splurge on an exquisite bottle of Grange to keep and treasure until that perfect moment calls for it to be enjoyed.
Take your seat in the elegantly modern Magill Estate Restaurant, where head chef Scott Huggins explores a conceptual approach to cooking that’s strongly influenced by the texture and flavours of seasonal fare and the terroir of wine.
This beautifully refined culinary journey is an eloquent conclusion to a day immersing in the innovation, inspiration and incredible heritage of Penfolds Magill Estate.
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it would be a dream to do this tour