Friday, June 6, 2008

Dilly Dally in the Clare Valley

My birth month continued with a two week visit from the bf. Phil flew in from Sydney and we planned a kick butt excursion to the Clare Valley, another wine region about an hour and a half’s drive from Adelaide known for its Riesling. Now, for all you Yanks out there, does anything appear wrong with this photo?

OH MY GOSH. PHIL. BE CAREFUL!! YOU’RE DRIVING ON THE WRONG SIDE OF THE CAR!! I was a bit alarmed at the prospect, I’m not gonna lie, and Phil’s brother Sean reaffirmed my reservations by reminding me that Phil’s not the best driver on the correct side of the road, but alas I live to tell the tale of Philari’s weekend of wine in the Clare Valley.

The drive through the countryside was peaceful and green and very un-Sydney, just what Phil was looking for on his vacation. As soon as we arrived in the Valley, we ditched the car and rented bikes to meander along the Riesling Trail, tasting wine and local foods along the way (in keeping with this year’s birthday theme).

It was SO SILLY that we had to wear dorky helmets. There was literally not a soul in sight along the trail, no intersections or roads or cars, no crazy hairpin turns for us to wipe out. I suppose if I would have drank a few more bottles of Riesling it would have been a good idea to protect my skull in case of accidental contact with concrete, but as it were, we just decided to be good citizens and wear the stupid things. Gosh darn it I hate helmet hair.

We stopped at Sevenhill cellars. This winery is the oldest in the region, founded in 1851 by Austrian Jesuits, and set in a beautiful location. They still produce sacramental wine for Catholic churches. Philari’s favorites here were a 2007 St Aloysius Riesling and a surprising liqueur Frontignac from their fortified range. It was spicy yet not too sweet and reminded me of a rum-drenched fruitcake (the dessert, not my Dad).

It seems that the roses flower all year round here! This one was as big as my big head!

We jumped back on our bikes and waved to the many sheep just hangin’ out all over…

And ventured off the Riesling Trail for a picturesque jaunt to Skillogalee.

A roaring fire awaited us at the cellar door, where we sampled their wines and fell in love with a basket-pressed shiraz and a crisp Riesling. We then sat on the cottage’s verandah and enjoyed a sparkling Riesling and a selection of local cheeses and breads. We just lost track of time, and the sun clock was broken so we whiled away the afternoon until the sun began to set.

But eventually we needed to move on so we wouldn’t be caught biking home in the pitch black (the trail was not lit – thank GOD we had those helmets).

Helmets, check! Dorks, check!

The shadows were long………………………………………………………………………….

The cows sang their song………………………………………………………………………..

I forged a close bond………………………………………………………………….

I’m glad I’m not blond. MOOOOOOOOOoooooooooooooOOOOOOOOOOOOOooooooooooOOOOOOOOooooooo.

We made it back to our SO TOO CUTE cottage…

….lit a fire….

…and just chilled with a nice Jim Barry blend.

And then it was time for bed.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

And then what happened?