The new venture comprises a suite of tasting spaces over two levels, attached to a large temperature-controlled, 40,000 wine bottle storage facility. It provides elevated views of the vineyard, into a showroom featuring dramatically illuminated ceramic and oak wine storage vessels, and – via a gantry – into the adjacent winery to observe fermentation vessels and experience aromas during vintage.
The installation of a large biodynamic flow form along the new building’s entrance wall underlines Yangarra’s biodynamic farming principals, while a contour map and vineyard layout overlaid as a decal along a vast glass interior wall explains the winery’s focus on single block wines.
‘It all speaks of our winemaking story, from the vineyard to the completed wine,’ explained Yangarra winemaker and general manager Peter Fraser, ahead of the new tasting room’s public launch on 19 May. ‘We are presenting an environment where tasters can pick up on visual cues about how and where our wines are made, to stimulate larger conversations about our wines.’
With stone tabletops, rich timbers including spotted gum ceiling batons and walnut stools, and artisan hand-thrown crockery made by South Australia’s JamFactory, the rugged materials and earthy colour palate chosen by Georgie Shepherd Interior Design echoes the natural environment and Yangarra’s sustainability policy.
Yangarra has expanded its tutored tastings – previously available at a small cottage on the Yangarra property – to now accommodate 70 tasters, with outdoor seating for a further 30 guests.
The Estate tasting (A$15) offers six Yangarra Estate wines and the Single Block tasting (A$30) provides six examples of current and back-vintage wines from single vineyard blocks. To underline Yangarra’s primary strength, the Expressions of Grenache tasting (A$20) presents six of the estate’s Grenache wines, from Grenache Blanc and rosé to the single site Ovitelli, but excluding High Sands Grenache, which is part of a separate A$200 tasting experience including a vineyard tour and flight of High Sands vintages.
Daily bookings for 90-minute tutored tasting sessions include a tasting plate with some cheese, local olives and cured meat. Guests can also remain to enjoy further wines by the glass or bottle at indoor or outdoor table settings.
Beyond the focus of Yangarra wines presented in the upper-level tasting room, The Hickinbotham Room, a handsome contained boardroom-like lounge on the new building’s lower level, is dedicated to exclusive tasting for up to six people of wines from Hickinbotham Estate Vineyards, also owned by Jackson Family Wines but maintained as a separate estate brand.