Although Coonawarra’s annual end-of-vintage festival After Dark had to contend with some dark and stormy skies, the event was still a huge success with hundreds of locals and region visitors joining in the festivities filled with food, wine, live music and fun activities.
In addition to Brand’s Laira, three other local wineries participated in Coonawarra After Dark - Digiorgio Family Wines, Zema Estate and Raidis Estate – all hosting unique events.
The After Dark weekend kicked off on Friday afternoon at Digiorgio Family Wines with their traditional vintage stomp where teams rolled up their sleeves and got amongst the grapes. After they were all stomped out, locals and visitors descended on Zema Estate, where Francesca Zema served up her famous family style pizzas for everyone to enjoy.
Later that evening, more than 300 revellers headed to Brand's Laira to relax to reggae beats by popular local musician Rhys Crimmin and tuck into delicious fish and chips, homemade brownies and a glass or two of Brand’s Laira wines. Not perturbed by the weather in the slightest, the crowd danced the night away.
To round off Coonawarra After Dark, on Saturday evening Chris Raidis showcased his famous charcoal grill at Raidis Estate, while live band Kingsley George kept the crowd entertained and on their toes.
Coming up next month is the Penola Coonawarra Arts Festival (17-20 May). It’s one of regional Australia’s leading arts festivals and features exhibitions, workshops, tours and other events – many of which are hosted by Coonawarra’s cellar door wineries, including Brand’s Laira. For more details, visit www.artfestival.com.au.
The perfect age means everything in winemaking.