Close this search box.

Greater SA’s Guide to Clare Valley Gourmet’s 40 Year Celebrations

Greater SA

Clare Valley Gourmet celebrates the Big 40

Get ready to raise a glass to 40 years of exquisite food and wine, as the Clare Valley SCA Gourmet Festival kicks off on May 17 spanning across ten delicious days.

This year’s Gourmet Fest is a monumental milestone, tracing back to the event’s humble beginnings in 1985, when the famous vintage celebration began with a conversation around a kitchen table, no doubt over wine. Now spanning four decades, Australia’s longest-running regional food and wine festival has blossomed into the pinnacle of culinary excellence, showcasing the very best the Clare Valley has to offer.

The celebration of the world-renowned Riesling-growing region is a carefully layered event, providing the perfect wine experience for everyone, with more than 85 events, from family-friendly festivals to five-star culinary experiences and wine masterclasses.

This action-packed weekend kickstarts the festivities with a dazzling array of food, music, and of course, the Valley’s finest wines. Prepare for a sensory overload!

Take a deep breath and soak up the flavours of the Clare Valley as the mid-week experience offers a farm-to-fork, vine-to-wine exploration into the region’s culinary scene. Enjoy winemaker-hosted dinners, wine masterclasses, art classes, and more.

Devour unforgettable long lunches at your favourite Clare Valley destinations or discover hidden gems you never knew existed. This is a food lover’s dream come true.


Here’s an appetiser of what’s in store as the people of the Valley share their passion and produce over ten delicious days of degustation.


Enter the Gateway to Gourmet 

Begin the celebration of gastronomical goodness with a visit to the Clare Valley Wine, Food and Tourism Centre.

To commemorate the 40 year milestone, the Centre is hosting Gateway to Gourmet on Friday May 17 from 4pm. Gourmet Goers can grab their official glassware and shuttle bus tickets, and warm up to the celebrations with some full-bodied flavours from Pauletts Winery, perfectly paired with Doughballs Pizza and live music by legendary local, AJ Pike.

On Sunday May 19, enjoy an afternoon session mingling with the makers behind Clare Valley’s hidden gems at Cellars Without Doors. Taste the creations, and learn the stories behind Rieslingfreak, Tope, Bourke & Travers, Million, Clare Valley Distillery and more!

Twilight Tasting  will be held on May 20 and 21, featuring some incredible collaborations, including an intimate evening of food and wine with the Eldredges and Terroir Head Chef, Dan Moss, on Monday.
Tuesday, it’s an exciting MR and KT collaboration – Matriarch and Rogue’s Marnie Roberts, Wines by KT (Kerry Thompson) and exciting eats from Ho Nai Vietnamese Kitchen.

Wine Down on May 24, after a busy festival week! Enjoy relaxing tunes, wines by Kilikanoon and the pizza hero’s from Doughballs will be back.


Warm up with fire and wine at Claymore 

The Claymore Wines crew has been crafting sumptuous wines for 25 years, and they’re celebrating the Gourmet milestone by inviting everyone over for some fun.

Kick off the Gourmet festivities with Friday Arvo Fire Night on May 17, featuring live music from local duo Junelee, famous fire-roasted Burra Butcher sausages and Claymore’s finest wines – the perfect warm-up for the weekend.

During “Land of the Long Lunch”, indulge in ‘la dolce vita’ and join Claymore’s exclusive “Barrel Store Cucina Italian Long Lunchon Saturday, May 26.

With limited seats available this afternoon of indulgence offers a 5-course menu, inspired by The Pasta Queen herself, Author Nadia Caterina Munno. Soak in the Italian vibes while savouring the flavourful feast paired with Claymore’s “Wines That Rock” –  a unique range of music-inspired wines including the elegant ‘Dark side of the Moon’ Shiraz and the crisp flavours of  ‘Joshua Tree’ Riesling.
Book your exclusive seat at the long lunch feast (and maybe a shuttle bus) for an unforgettable afternoon.

Good Old Fashioned “Hoedown” at Hill River 

🤠  Can we get a Yeehaw for the makers of exceptional wine and relaxing times at Hill River Estate? These guys are ramping up the fun over the Festival Weekend with a rip-roaring two-day Hoedown Over the Hill’.

Get ready to kick up your heels for a fair dinkum good time at Hill River Clare Estate on May 18 and 19.
Australia’s top Country and Western Bush band, Swamp Dawkins, will have you boot scooting ’til sundown, and while you’re two-stepping under the glorious Gum trees, Tim from Yorke Peninsula’s Chunky Boys Kitchen will be serving up slow-cooked, Americana-style deliciousness – perfect fuel for a hoe down!

The Jaeschke family’s award-winning wines will be flowing, and this laid-back, family-friendly event will be a shindig for the memory books.

A touch of La cucina italiana

If you’re craving a taste of Italy, the award-winning team at Ragu & Co is serving up, Sip & Savour, Naked Flavours – a special three-course meal (“il pasto completo) on Saturday May 18.
Savour authentic Italian flavours with a modern twist, paired with Naked Run’s acclaimed wines, including crisp Riesling and bold Grenache.

For adventurous connoisseurs of Italian delights, join Ragu & Co for a unique “Grape Adventure” Long Lunch on Saturday May 25. They’re teaming up with the roving Winemakers from TOPE Wines, to deliver a four-course culinary extravaganza, complimented by vibrant wines, Italian melodies and good vibes.

Set in Clare’s rustic old chaff mill, built in 1870, Ragu & Co’s historic setting sets the stage for an unforgettable Clare Gourmet experience.


Sevenhill Cellars – Toasting the Past and Present

It’ll be a Gourmet extravaganza at Sevenhill Cellars, with four delicious events showcasing the very best the Valley has to offer, from mouth-watering food, award-winning wines and unforgettable experiences.

You can’t have a 40th without a two-day ‘partay’, and why not celebrate on May 18 and 19, with an Asian Fusion Feast by Sookii La La and some live music from Adelaide cover band, Squirrel Grip. Sevenhill wines will be flowing, along with beer, cider, vodka and gin, and if you’re planning on bringing a crew, be sure to make a booking.

Explore the History of Grenache on May 17 and 24, with an exclusive opportunity at the oldest winery in the Clare Valley. Winemaker, Will Shields or Viticulturist, Craig Richards will lead the guided tours, which will of course include a spot of wine tasting, accompanied by some local produce on a platter.

Take your tastebuds on a trip back in time, and Compare Past & Present Vintages from May 20-26, with tastings of Sevenhill Rieslings and the popular St Ignatius red.

Winemarker, Will Shields, invites you for Campfire Conversations on May 23, in Sevenhill Cellars exciting new event space, ‘The Forest’. Take a deck chair and sample 2024 and older vintage wines in a relaxed and stunning Clare Valley setting.

Lift your Spirits at Sawmill Gin 

If you need to “wine down” and get in the Gourmet spirit, you must stop in at the charming Sawmill Gin and Curly Goose in the rolling vineyards behind Sevenhill.

The location of this place is reason enough to visit alone, but team that with delicious food and award-winning Gin, locally-inspired signature cocktails (*tip from a fellow gin-lover – ask for a Jam Fancy) and a stunning view of the pump house dam, windmill and vineyard, and you might just settle in here for longer than expected.

During Festival Weekend, enjoy the spirits range in a reusable “keep cup”, with $12 refills and casual vineyard dining options. And “Breathe it in” during Gourmet week, with a weekday tipple at Sawmill’s Devonshire G & Tea – featuring house-made scones and gin-infused treats served on charming old English crockery (Chef, Sophie Whitehead actually used to work for Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother at Clarence House), promising a special gourmet gin experience.


Uncork and Unwind at Ulster Park Wines

Expect triple the treats at Ulster Park, where you can raise a glass right throughout the Gourmet birthday celebration. Savour the flavours of Ulster Park’s delicious range of wines, including the signature full-bodied, Matriarch Shiraz and learn the story behind the flavourful drop.

During Festival Weekend from May 17-19, stop by Auburn’s picturesque Main Street Cellar Door and enjoy the offerings from the three glorious businesses on site. Shop for fashion and giftware at A Joyful Bunch, grab a Gin cocktail from Three Little Birds and enjoy an Ulster Park wine by the glass or bottle.

Friday night, from 4pm-8pm, Nellie M will be bringing the acoustic vibes, and again from 2pm Saturday. Annie Wheare will step into the musical spotlight on Sunday from 2pm and the wood-fired pizza oven will be fired up right throughout the weekend.

A Taste of Excellence at Watervale

The award-winning Watervale Hotel is teaming up with local wineries to bring you a truly special Clare Valley Gourmet experience. Get ready for a line-up of delectable degustation dinners, fiery feasts, and insightful masterclasses.

What better way to dive into the Gourmet offerings than with six courses of gastronomical greatness. On Friday May 17, you can enjoy a six-course soiree for lunch and dinner. Winemakers, the Koerner Brothers, will be joining guests for a Long-Lunch, while South Australian Chef of the Year, Nicola Palmer will be at the helm of a Cellars Without Doors Degustation Dinner.

Follow it up with a fiery flame-grilled feast of meats and smoked vegetables on May 18 with Fiesta del Fuego, featuring Mediterranean wines from Matriarch and Rogue, and Latin beats simmering in the background.

During Gourmet week, from May 20-24, Kirrihill Winemaker, Alexandra Wardlaw, will be taking guests for a Masterclass of wine, perfect for Riesling lovers and Shiraz fans. And to wrap up the week-long festival, Icons of the Clare Valley Degustation Dinner on May 25, will feature iconic local wines, paired by Chef Nicola Palmer and led by “Sommelier”, Warrick Duthy.

These incredible events, from the world-famous Watervale Hotel will no doubt sell out, so jump over here, book your spot, and prepare to have your tastebuds tantalised like never before!



More greatness

Send Us A Message