There’s no shortage of events celebrating the cool-climate wines of the Adelaide Hills. But Crush 2017 is your go-to for all things white. A counterbalance to July’s Winter Reds events, Crush celebrates the heroes of summer: sparkling, sauvignon blanc, pinot gris, chardonnay, rosé and more.
Add to that regional produce, live music and some of the most striking views in the state, it’s a pretty great way to spend a weekend.
More than 30 wineries across the region will open their doors from January 27 to 29 – hosting one-off events from picnics on the lawn and lazy lunches, to degustation dinners. There’s a lot to choose from, so we’ve picked out the best.
Crush Unplugged, Ngeringa
One of Australia’s biodynamic wine pioneers, Ngeringa, is throwing open its doors for a weekend of local food, wine and music. Two days of French- and Italian-inspired, minimal-intervention wines and wood-oven-fired pizzas – made with produce fresh from the kitchen garden – will be backed by a soundtrack of live music from Jazzy Jones. There’s also breakfast on the Sunday, prepared by chef Roger Campbell. Bring a picnic rug and chill on the lawns or kick back on the verandah.
Saturday January 28, 11am-5pm and Sunday January 29, 9am-5pm
119 Williams Road, Mount Barker Summit
Taste the Seasons, The Lane Vineyard
Watch the sun set over the Hills with a glass of wine in hand before a seven-course degustation dinner showcasing the region’s seasonal produce and new release wines. Think spiced pork neck; dry aged duck; summer berries; and miso wagyu shortrib. Booking is essential. Or if you’d rather save your pennies, head up earlier in the day for rosé and croquet. Refresh with a glass of frosé at the outdoor Rosé Bar before sampling treats from the two-hatted kitchen. Hit the lawns in the afternoon for a spot of croquet and a live acoustic session.
Saturday January 28 and Sunday January 29, 10am–4.30pm
(Dinner is Saturday 6.30pm for a 7pm start ($120pp *Degustation wine pairing available for $45pp)
5 Ravenswood Lane, Hahndorf*
From the Oven, from the Garden, from the Region, The Seasonal Garden Café
Silvia Hart prides herself on supplying local, seasonal, sustainable produce and that’s exactly what you’ll get at this outdoor banquet, prepared by Hart and special guest Duncan Welgemoed. Join them in the cafe’s eponymous garden for an afternoon of Adelaide Hills produce, local wines and bocce. Make it a whole weekend affair and head up on Friday evening for a “soiree” of wood-oven tapas, Hersey wines and an open air screening of Hunt for the Wilderpeople. Tickets include dinner, first glass of wine and the movie.
Friday, January 27 6pm–11pm
Saturday January 28 and Sunday January 29 11am–midnight
100 Main Street, Hahndorf
Chardy in the Vines, Mt Lofty Ranges Vineyard
The contentious but ubiquitous chardonnay is making a comeback and Lenswood is leading the charge. Mt Lofty Ranges Vineyard will celebrate the white wine with eight back vintages matched to an eight-course sunset dinner or four-course lazy lunch. Day or night, you’ll want to settle in for this one; it has one of the most postcard-worthy views in the Hills. Booking is essential.
Saturday January 28, 6pm–10pm and Sunday January 29, 12.30pm–4.30pm
166 Harris Road, Lenswood
Relax and Settle in @ Lofty, Mount Lofty House
Mount Lofty House will team up with four Adelaide Hills wineries – Sew & Sew Wines, Chain of Ponds, Karrawatta and Lansdowne – for a day of food, booze and music among the vines. There will be a spit-roast picnic, live entertainment, craft beers and, of course, wines from each winery. Transfers to and from the city are available. Bookings required.
Sunday January 29 10am–4pm
74 Mount Lofty Summit Road, Crafers
The Piece Project, Longview Vineyard
Now in its seventh year, street art competition The Piece Project returns to Crush to find the next artwork for the label of Longview’s premium reserve shiraz, ‘The Piece’. This year’s focus is on women, with artists Lady Poise, Nish Cash, George Rose and Lisa King battling it out to have their art plastered on the bottle. The winner will be decided by an all-female judging panel. There will also be wine, street food, prizes and DJs throughout the day.
Sunday January 29, 12pm–7pm
154 Pound Road, Macclesfield
Alternative Wine Styles Master Class, Stanley Bridge Restaurant
2016 and 2015 Young Gun of Wine ‘Winemaker’s Choice’ winner Michael Downer (Murdoch Hill) will take guests for a guided tasting of some of the Hills’ cutting edge varieties and styles. He’ll be joined by winemaking guru David LeMire. Given the credentials of these two, you’ll want to listen. Bookings are essential. Tickets are $30pp.
Saturday January 28, 11am and 2pm
41 Onkaparinga Valley Road, Verdun
Lunch in the Gallery, Bird in Hand
Chef de cuisine Carlos Astudillo will prepare a degustation lunch paired with back vintage wine showcasing Bird in Hand’s Australian Winery of the Year (2015) and Winemaker of the Year (2014 and 2015) accolades. Expect dishes made with produce from local growers and their own kitchen garden such as salmon carpaccio, beef tartare, milk-poached veal, raviolo of blue swimmer crab, and pan-roasted snapper with sides of garden leaves and potato gratin. Bookings are essential. Ticket price $165pp.
Sunday January 29, 12.30pm
Pfeiffer Road, Woodside
Summer Garden Party, Lobethal Road Wines
What’s better than a garden party on a sunny summer day? Head to the Lobethal Road Wines cellar door where chef Ali Seedsman will serve up a summery, Asian-inspired menu. Think steamed dumplings with ginger and shallot; crispy chicken with steamed rice and satay sauce; braised black pepper lamb with steamed rice and greens; and coconut sago pudding with mango and palm sugar. There will also be live music from Matt Hawkins and The Baker Suite and plenty of award-winning wines.
Saturday January 28 and Sunday January 29 11am–5pm
2254 Onkaparinga Valley Road, Mount Torrens
Dinner with a View, Petaluma
Visit Petaluma’s brand new cellar door, overlooking the Hills, for a three-course regional dinner created by Comida Catering and matched with Petaluma’s cool climate wines. Vegan and gluten-free options are available. Tickets are $120pp.
Friday January 27, 6pm for pre-dinner
254 Pfeiffer Road, Woodside
Entry to all non-ticketed events is free. An official souvenir Spiegelau wine glass can be purchased for $10. Designated drivers can collect a wristband at participating Crush venues and receive a complimentary non-alcoholic beverage. A bus service will run to and from Adelaide and a shuttle bus will travel between venues during the day. More information on transport options here.