McLaren Vale Winery – Lazy Ballerina

I must say that everything about this cellar door is a joy.  The location is on Brookman Road, Kupito (overlooking Willunga) – see map and is only open on weekends.  Details on their website

The cellar door is on the property of James Hook & family and the gardens are magnificent and this alone would be worth spending some time admiring the view.  The walk from the car park to the cellar door entrance allows the visitor to walk through some of the gardens.  The gardens have a number of spots to stop and admire or to investigate further.

The cellar door also provides food (such as pizza) that can be served on the balcony overlooking gardens and the property.  The cellar door is new, clean and inviting and I am sure I will visit there again many times.

The Lazy Ballerina is a venture by James Hook (who is a contract viticulturist in the Mclaren Vale area).  James and his parents decided to make some wine when they observed that a number of the smaller grape growers were being harshly treated by the large wine companies.  They decided to do something about this by purchasing parcels of excellent grapes and make their own wine.  To date the wine has been made by James at the Redheads small wine making facility.  This facility has recently been shutdown and now James needs to find another avenue for his wine making activities.

The wines are small volume and are of high quality.  At the recent tasting the usual wines were sold out and 3 small volume museum release wines (1 from another small winery).

2006 Chardonnay

This was an unusual wine as it had been aged in stainless steel for 2 years – not in oak or the bottle.  The characters were different and the wine did not seem to be as old as it was.  The wine exhibits some clean melon flavours and would be best drunk now.

2005 Lot Thirteen Greanche ($A25)

This wine is from Lot 13 Hahn Rd, Sellicks Hill (S.J. & . J. Mcmillan) and is impressive.  As I have said before I am a fan of Mclaren Vale Grenache and this is a good one.  Lots of plum fruit and smart oak balance.  The wine could be kept for a few years but I am not sure why you would!

2006 Shiraz Viognier  ($A25)

This wine won a Mclaren Vale Show award and it was noted that there was correct use of the vigonier.  Allot of examples of this blend have had increasing proportions of the secondary grape with correspondingly overpowering of the shiraz characters.  This wine is  well balanced and restores my belief that this blend has a place in my collection.

2007 Shiraz (this wine is not normally for tasting)

This is a most impressive wine and is the best 2007 Shiraz I have tasted in a long time.  This wine has great fruit character with the pepper that is apparent in the best Mclaren Vale Shiraz.  The oak here is also impressive and is balanced with the fruit.  I saw how much of this was left at the winery (only a few 6 packs left) – but if you can get some of this it is well worth the investment.


This is an impressive winery with something for the whole family – food, wine & somewhere for the kids to run around.  With the current track record this little venture is one to watch.

About Lonely Grape

Passionate about wine - particularly McLaren Vale wines. Check out my blog on different winery reviews and my wine sales web site
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1 Response to McLaren Vale Winery – Lazy Ballerina

  1. Gordon says:

    There is an understandable typo on the Lazy Ballerina page. “Kupito” should read ‘Kuitpo’.

    “I must say that everything about this cellar door is a joy. The location is on Brookman Road, Kupito (overlooking Willunga)”

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