Barossa Valley Wines

Barossa Valley Wine RegionBarossa Valley Wine Region


Barossa Valley, the main and most popular winemaking region of Australia, is located 56 km northeast of Adelaide and is aptly called Australia’s Napa Valley.

The area is home to lots of old and large Australian wineries. Famous wineries like Orlando Wines, Penfolds, Peter Lehmann, Seppeltsfield, Wolf Blass and Yalumba are either headquartered or have their major holdings here.



Hot Continental Climate


The grapes of Barossa Valley region are rich and ripe with high levels of sugar because of the hot continental climate. Therefore, the region became famous for its fortified wines initially, and now it’s famous for its red wines. A Barossa Valley Vintage Festival is hosted here every two years that is a huge celebration to acknowledge the success of local wine-makers.


History of Barossa Valley


One of the main reasons that make Barossa Valley different from the other winemaking regions of Australia is its history. While most other regions were populated by British Colonists, this region was populated by Prussian refugees who had fled from Europe to here in the middle of 19th century. These refugees, mostly skilled farmers, had little or no knowledge of winemaking as their home region, that is part of today’s Poland, had a cooler climate.


Fortified Wines


With the passage of time, and after trying to plant different cultures, the farmers discovered that the valley, their new home, was perfect for viticulture and thus started establishing vineyards. Some of these old vineyards still exist to this day. In the beginning, they started making the Riesling wine, a German type of wine which due to the nature of the region was ripe and alcoholic. It was the beginning of the production of fortified wines that eventually earned the first praise for Barossa Valley winemakers.


Trend towards Red Wines


The development of fortified wine production required red grapes and so the region became widely associated with such grapes as Shiraz. While things were going smoothly for Barossa Valley farmers, however, towards the middle of 20th century, the wine trend changed. It moved away from fortified wines towards red table wines, made from Cabernet Sauvignon, that were considered more sophisticated.

The strength and power of the Valley suddenly became its weakness as the interest towards the fortified wines of the region was lost. However, that’s not the end of the story!


Revival of Barossa Valley Wines


Towards the end of the 20th century, interest towards wines produced from old grape vines was revived and Barossa Valley, with its 150 years’ old history of old wine, had a lot to offer. Shiraz from the valley finally got the praise that was due to it for its deep and rich taste and the region suddenly emerged as the leader of Australian winemaking. As it happens with most revivals, a refocus from the trend led to the rediscovery of the region’s potential and it has become the quintessential Australian wine region today.


Other Wines from Barossa Valley


Although Barossa Valley is now most famous for its signature grape variety of Shiraz, it also grows other grapes like Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Grenache, Mourvedre, Riesling and Semillon. The main focus of the region remains on red wines but white wine is also produced here. Of course, a number of fortified wines are still produced in the area, and who knows, their time to get back into the spotlight might come once again in future.

Leave a Comment