Krondorf Road [1 day]
There’s no better way to spend a day in the Barossa than in the beautiful, historic village of Krondorf. Originally settled in the 1800s by a tight knit group of Lutheran families, it is today recognised as one of the most prestigious fine wine precincts in the country and is still home to a number of direct descendants of those early residents.
Krondorf translates quite appropriately from the original German to “the Village of the Crown.” It sits at the base of the Kaiser Stuhl (“the King’s Seat”) which marks the highest point of the Barossa Ranges and frames our beautiful little village below, creating a superb viticultural microclimate and lending context to our name.
The 4km stretch of Road is a lovely walk or bike ride (the Barossa Trail crosses the Road at Barossa Valley Way for easy access) and will quite happily occupy a day – or more, should you choose to take up an accommodation option and stay overnight to extend your visit. If you do, make sure to turn your face towards the hills as the late afternoon light bathes the village in golden warmth. The setting sun turns the hills of the Barossa Range a stunning purple, signaling the end of another day.
Start at either end of the road but do note that there’s a slight rise to be conquered if you’re travelling east to west!
Before we begin, may we suggest that a great way to start your Krondorf journey is by joining Barossa Walks for a Barossa Cultural Heritage Tour which meanders at a leisurely pace through Krondorf on Sunday mornings from 9am to 11am. Your host, Jess Greatwich also owns Krondorf Creek Farm (more on this in a moment) and is great lover of this little corner of the world. The Walking Tours are engaging, immersive and entertaining and will give you a sense of genuine connection to this village and the Barossa generally. And then, it’s on to the Cellar Doors!
Start your day at Grant Burge Wines. With a Cellar Door that boasts some of the most beautiful views of the Barossa it’s the perfect place to begin your Krondorf exploration. There’s a broad range of wines available, including a number of offerings exclusive to Cellar Door. With superb sparkling whites, award winning fortified wines and delicious local produce platters available from 11am-3pm, it’s a great start to your Krondorf adventure!
Open seven days, 10am to 5pm
Just down the road from Grant Burge Wines is Krondorf Creek Farm. Follow the driveway through the estate vineyards and arrive at Cellar Door – a beautifully restored stone smokehouse dating back to the earliest days of the Barossa that has been lovingly bought back to life by current custodians of the property Jess Greatwich and James Ehrat. Krondorf Creek Farm is a true estate winery, meaning they only make wine from fruit they have grown themselves in their 13 acre vineyard which was hand planted by James seventeen years ago.
The connection between the vineyard, the wines and the property is so important to Jess and James that all Krondorf Creek Farm wines are available exclusively from Cellar Door – they have no retail, restaurant or wholesale distribution whatsoever. So for a true taste of Krondorf, and a connection to the best of the Barossa, do join them for a wine tasting; they offer a great example of genuine Barossa hospitality.
Open Friday to Sunday 12pm to 5pm
Brett Grocke is a sixth generation “Krondorfian” who today is growing grapes on his family’s original property and making wine in a modern, sustainable, off-grid winery dug into the side of a hill under the name Eperosa Vineyards. During vintage time in the Barossa (February – March – early April, depending on the year) you can see, hear and taste the magic of winemaking all around you as you taste wines directly in the winery.
Eperosa wines really start in the vineyard, as Brett adheres to organic principles and employs methods such as hand pruning, bunch thinning, hand picking and hand sorting the fruit to grow resilient, flavoursome fruit. It’s a great spot to see the art of winemaking close up.
Open Friday to Sunday, 11am to 5pm
Charles Melton Wines is rightly known as one of the great red wine makers of the Barossa – and Australia – and his lovely Cellar Door offers seated tastings in rustic, cosy surrounds. The Nine Popes GSM is famed around the world as an iconic Rhone blend and is available at certain times throughout the year in Cellar Door in both standard format and Magnums.
Happily, Charlie is also a great lover of four-legged friends so there’s usually a friendly Cellar Door ambassador around looking for a pat, while Cellar Door manager Cameron is an unrepentant wine nerd - so for those who relish the technical details and hoary questions of winetasting, Charles Melton Wines should be a definite stop on your journey.
Open seven days, 11am to 5pm.
Moorooroo Park Vineyards is another hidden gem of Krondorf. Follow the clearly signposted route from Krondorf Road, and you’ll soon stumble across a beautiful little Cellar Door surrounded by manicured, formal gardens and gorgeous picnic grounds. Their range of quality wines – including the exceptional “Black on Black” shiraz is complimented by a curated cheese board offering, and on long weekends the wood oven pizzas are a definite must-eat on your itinerary (and whatever you do, don’t forgo the dessert calzone…!)
Open Friday and Saturday 11am to 5pm
Your next stop along the road is Rockford Wines, an iconic winemaker of the Barossa and one who is wholeheartedly committed to preserving the best of the traditional Australian wine trade. The small cellar door is housed in the original stables of the property and the courtyard emulates the traditional clustered layout of early mixed farms. Rockford Wines hold a Barossa Trust Mark for their exceptional Basket Press Shiraz which is usually available for tasting and sales from March to May - a fabulous time to visit as the winery is in full view of the Cellar Door. Watch the cellar hands hand forking every bunch of grapes into the ancient Bagshaw crusher, or pumping over the ferments and gain a new appreciation of the work it takes to produce truly exceptional wines. Finally, don’t forget to try the beautiful, old fashioned Tawny Port, quietly aging away in the rafters above your head in Cellar Door; it’s the Barossa in a bottle.
Open seven days 11am to 5pm
And finally, finish your journey at St Hallett Wines, established in 1944 by the Lindner family who were prominent landholders in early Krondorf. Their original focus on fortified wines has now expanded to include a portfolio of red and white wine, and of course their flagship Old Block Shiraz.
The story of St Hallett is inextricably linked to the broader narrative of the Barossa and features some truly remarkable characters – Carl Lindner, Bob McLean and Robert O’Callaghan have all left their mark on this beautiful winery and the exceptional wines it produces.
Today you can enjoy one of their premium wines, a delicious grazing platter of local produce and even a glass of wine on the beautifully manicured lawns.
Open seven days 10am to 5pm.
If you’ve fallen in love with Krondorf and want to extend your stay, The Kirche at Charles Melton is a wonderful place to lay your head for the night. Built in 1864, the Zum Kripplein Christi (Manger of Christ) Lutheran Church has been lovingly restored as an exceptional bed and breakfast.
Friends, we hope that has given you a little glimpse into the wonders that await in Krondorf. From the jewels of Australian winemaking, to the hidden gems waiting to be discovered, you look forward to warmly welcoming you to the “Village of the Crown” Krondorf.