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Wine Tastings

Lucerne, Switzerland
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Wine Tastings

We're going to Australia in July / August. We also visit the McLaren Vale and wanna do some wine tasting. Most places - people told me - you just can walk in. We did lots of tastings before in Napa Valley and also in Spain. Some few in France. Everywhere you pay. But I've heard many in Australia offer it for free. Is that so?

And if....is it a bit strange to have a tasting but not purchase their wine afterwards? Because we plan to do quite some amount of tastings...and we can't just buy a bottle everywhere we go, just to be nice.

Sorry to post this here AND on the Barossa Valley forum....just wanna be sure to get lots of feedback.

Thanks!

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Australia
Australia
South Pacific
McLaren Vale
McLaren Vale
Greater Adelaide, Australia
Barossa Valley
Barossa Valley
South Australia, Australia
27 replies to this topic
Brisbane, Australia
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1. Re: Wine Tastings

Haven't been to McLaren Vale but my experience in Yarra Valley is that most (not all) charge a small fee approx $5 per person for tasting which is refundable if you buy any wine etc.

If you plan on drinking a lot, go with a pre-booked tour guide who will do all of the driving for you and generally help ease the day as they know most of the good wineries etc.

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McLaren Vale
McLaren Vale
Greater Adelaide, Australia
Yarra Valley
Yarra Valley
Victoria, Australia
Sydney, Australia
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for Sydney, Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, Airlie Beach, Whitsunday Islands
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2. Re: Wine Tastings

It is true that many are free.

The Yarra Valley charging me quite surprised me at first (and this was a while ago)

There are also some that charge in maclaren and barossa. Some only charge to taste their premium selection.

To be polite only taste what you are interested in.

Be aware of the .05 rule for driving.

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Yarra Valley
Yarra Valley
Victoria, Australia
Adelaide, Australia
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1,354 posts
19 reviews
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3. Re: Wine Tastings

Yarra Valley is in Victoria....I have no idea why the Victorians are charging for wine tasting

Here in South Australia, McLaren Vale, just like the Barossa is free.

weekendnotes.com/free-things-to-do-mclaren-v…

"5 Free Things to do in McLaren Vale....

1. Individual Wine Tasting Tour

If you are a wine-lover, it's a must to visit a few of the award winning wineries of the region. The McLaren Vale is famous for their Shiraz and you will find many well-known names in the wine business. Find the complete brochure of cellar doors in the Visitor Centre and follow your own taste................"

Edited: 30 June 2014, 06:45
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Yarra Valley
Yarra Valley
Victoria, Australia
Victoria
Victoria
Australia
McLaren Vale
McLaren Vale
Greater Adelaide, Australia
Barossa Valley
Barossa Valley
South Australia, Australia
Brisbane, Australia
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77 posts
171 reviews
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4. Re: Wine Tastings

Good old Aussie's gotta love the patriotism! The Yarra was good. I actually used to rate old world wines higher than Aussie wines until I moved here and tried them from the cellar door - best wines I have tasted in a long time. I'm looking forward to sampling the SA wines!

Good to know that they don't charge too!

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Yarra Valley
Yarra Valley
Victoria, Australia
Adelaide, Australia
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19 reviews
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5. Re: Wine Tastings

"Good old Aussie's gotta love the patriotism!"

Hehe, as much as there is always a healthy rivalry between SA and Victoria, I was intending no shot at the Vics. Just trying to clarify for someone coming from Switzerland who may be unfamiliar with our wine districts, that the Yarra Valley in Victoria ,or similarly the Hunter in NSW, is far removed from the wine growing districts here in SA, by hundreds of kilometres.

I do now worry about this trend of charging for tastings though, as should it spread it can be a double edged sword:

-Tasting as another source of income for wineries

-Charging for tasting could see cellar door tasting dropping off, which in turn doesn't provide customers with an experience of the wines.

This sorta thing could lead to wine sales dropping off (ie: Why drink that Barossa Valley Cabernet that I have never tried, when I already know the Californian stuff I'm familiar with is ok and reasonably priced).

Living near the Barossa Valley, wine tasting is an institution here, which promotes the local product and keeps travellers visiting the district. I'd hate to see that jeapordised by following a trend to start charging for what has always been provided free.

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Victoria
Victoria
Australia
Yarra Valley
Yarra Valley
Victoria, Australia
Barossa Valley
Barossa Valley
South Australia, Australia
Sydney, Australia
Destination Expert
for Sydney, Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, Airlie Beach, Whitsunday Islands
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6. Re: Wine Tastings

Ranger, Shaw and Smith (yes I know its the Hills) charge.

Pirramimma charged last time we were there… and the cellar door was empty. There was one other, perhaps Angoves?

The silly part to charging is I am less likely to buy something unless I really love it.

Yarra has been charging for at least 12 years….. who cares if you sell wine at the door when your restaurant etc is actually bringing in way more $

Edited: 30 June 2014, 08:37
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Yarra Valley
Yarra Valley
Victoria, Australia
Sydney/Melbourne
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18,132 posts
76 reviews
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7. Re: Wine Tastings

My experience in the Yarra Valley is that only a small handful of wineries charge tasting fees - Domaine Chandon being one of them. IMO their wines aren't anything special and I'm happy to bypass their cellar doors for places that don't have such a high opinion of their own importance.

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Yarra Valley
Yarra Valley
Victoria, Australia
Lucerne, Switzerland
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263 posts
858 reviews
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8. Re: Wine Tastings

Thanks a lot guys!

Adelaide, Australia
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2,000 posts
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9. Re: Wine Tastings

The majority of wineries in the maclaren vale area are small family based businesses trying to earn a living, by selling their product. Cellar doors are there to sample for the intended purchaser. They are not intended for people having free tastings at every place they come to. If you cant afford a bottle then dont be a free loader! Some are only $10.

IMHO a conscientious tourist will support the local areas he is visiting.

Sydney, Australia
Destination Expert
for Sydney, Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, Airlie Beach, Whitsunday Islands
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10. Re: Wine Tastings

Magpie girl. If you go into a dress boutique and try things on but nothing fits. Do you buy it anyway?

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