There are so many wineries to choose from. If only I knew a Cellar Door professional who could give me some advice!
Fear not, friends. I happen to work in the Cellar Door of an established fine Barossa red winery and I recently got out and about to do some tastings myself.
I did the hard work so you don't have to. Or rather, I did the tastings so you can too. Avoid the crowds and tourist buses by following my list of tried and tested boutique wineries (plus restaurants and where to stay)...
A day of wine tastings
In no particular order...
This absolutely is in order and Grant Burge rightly sits at the top. The Cellar Door is intimate enough to avoid feeling like a bar but large enough to get good service. The staff are knowledgeable, helpful and not a bit snooty.
Must try: Balthazar cool climate Shiraz; Shadrach Cab Sav (if available)
Awarded Best Cellar Door 2016, they let you sit down here while you sample their range of Grenache and Shiraz blends. There's also an outstanding rose, which is generally considered to be top 5 in Australia.
Must try: Voices of Angels cool climate Shiraz; Nine Popes GSM - the 2014 just won Best Barossa Red Blend, Best South Australian Red and Best Australian Red at the International Wine Awards
Tiny Cellar Door but big wines.
Must try: Reserve Merlot - I liked it enough to buy a bottle and Merlot is never normally to my taste!
Not a winery but a Cellar Door and restaurant showcasing some of the region's best boutique wineries.
Must try: Hobbs Tango Shiraz Viognier, if it's still there when you go!
Stunning Cellar Door, which was actually designed and built in Germany, then shipped over to Australia - I shit you not - complete with stained glass window made by the winemaker, Damien Tscharke's wife.
Must try: Gnadenfrei Shiraz
Obviously book a taxi. It's just not worth the risk and, let's face it, it's hard to spit out so much deliciousness. Google "Barossa taxis" and you can get something for 50-65 AUD per hour.
Where to eat
For lunch/takeaway/to soak up all that Barossa booze? The Roaring 40s in Angaston. Their pizza was described to me by a friend as the best she'd ever tasted. I describe it to you in those same terms. The 40s Barossa Deluxe in particular.
Where to stay
A cosy little cottage with a wonderfully comfortable bed, well stocked fridge for morning bacon and eggs, and its own spa jacuzzi, it's situated just outside Angaston in very picturesque grounds. Find it on Airbnb here.
Definitely some of the best skies in Australia.
BOOM - 48 hours in the Barossa, done.
Let me know in the comments if you have anything to add!