I told myself I absolutely had to blog it down, because it was a weekend that I know I never want to forget. All the feels, for reals. I didn't mean to rhyme. hahah.
I can't describe how much I love this cheeky, spastic, handsome guy. The guy who when we first met I thought was insanely out of my league and decided for myself that I was not the kind of girl someone like him would ever be into. He was the typical cool, handsome, casanova, and there I was, the dorky, glasses-wearing nerd.
Everytime I think of our relationship, I really do ask myself - "How the heck did I get so lucky?".
And I don't think I'll ever stop wondering that :)
We planned out our weekend to be a super chill, relaxing, wine-infused vacation spent in the Adelaide hills. Neither of us had ever really gone wine tasting, so yet another 'first' to add to our growing list.
I'm so happy to share all these firsts with Simon, there's no one I'd rather share them with.
We booked an Airbnb location- a secluded, romantic, cosy place close to Strathalbyn
Going on this trip I realise how awesome SA is, driving only 20 minutes gets you well into the country-side and the lush hills area, wineries everywhere you turn and excellent views wherever you go. One of the reasons I'm definitely aiming to keep my family in SA.
Started the day down in Port Adelaide with Zhen, and ate at the Folklore Cafe- a little breakfast spot that sits legit right on the port, with ceiling-to-floor windows so you feel like you're floating on the water. Its a super nice place to relax. The food was overpriced though, so if you're looking for cheap food, this is not the place to be. $20 for breakfast? Not for me. Haha.
Its crazy how popular breakfast/brunch has become, and how much people can charge for simple food these days. Avo on toast? Mate, how are you charging me over $10 for that.
REGARDLESS, we had a nice start to the day.
Theres an epic playground right next to the cafe that has a human-sized hamster wheel!! How crazy is that!? Haha definitely relived childhood in that playground.
We said goodbye to Zhen and made our way towards the hills.
First place we stopped at was The Winehouse, in Langhorne Creek. I'm so so glad that this was the first place we went to, because the lady who took care of us was so accommodating and friendly. I was worried that being our first time wine tasting, people might look down on us or think that we are just there for free wine or something. But she was awesome. Invited us in with open arms, straight away gave us an excellent wine tasting and talked us through the history of each wine with their wine-makers. She gave us information about things without being overbearing, giving us time alone with our opinions and didn't shove her opinions down our throats. I suuuper enjoyed myself.
Would be a perfect wedding venue, if our guest list was small.. fat chance with that though, given the size of our families. Haha. Absolutely beautiful. Unfortunately I was so preoccupied with enjoying myself and soaking in all the feels that I didn't take even one photo. Doesn't matter though, I know I will come back in a heartbeat.
Ended up buying a couple bottles of red that we really enjoyed and even some of their Meechi Beer, which was surprisingly tasty given that they don't really make beers.
Another thing I'm thankful for Simon is how patient and knowledgeable he is, while still being humble and being a great listener.
Having worked at Gauchos for years, they had all their waiters go through wine tasting courses so they would know which wines to recommend to guests, and be able to suggest appropriate pairings to particular meals. This means he is pretty well versed with wines, unlike me who does not have a clue.
Even though he knows what hes doing, he is more than happy to listen to other peoples opinions and doesn't approach things arrogantly, which I certainly know some people who do, when we start on a topic that they know alot about. He is more than happy to and super patient with teaching me the ropes and encouraging me to learn more about things. Jesus christ, sounds like I legit idolize him. Haha but lets face it. Why deny it? I'm his biggest fan.
Moving on, since we enjoyed ourselves so much we continued with our winery adventures and ended up at Bremerton Winery, a place much larger than the first, suggested by the lady who helped us out in the Winehouse.
I felt like even as a beginner wine-taster, their wines weren't as nice as the previous, they tended to taste more acidic and didn't have that nice lingering finish. Look at me, trying to describe wines.
And although I'm a newbie, I can say with full conviction that I am 100% a red wine girl.
Maybe its bad drunken memories of sculling cheap whites, or just the overall over-sweetness of them, but I'm definitely not a white wine person. Even if you gave me a free bottle (which the airbnb owners did), I probably wouldn't drink it. I've only had a handful of good white wines, and those were at pretty high-end restaurants and they paired the whites with a really nice seafood dish.
Anywho, Bremerton although wasn't my favourite in terms of wine, was my favourite place that we had food at. We ordered a tasting platter with our bottle of cab-sav, and thoroughly enjoyed having a sip after every mouthful, and seeing how the flavours change/enhance. So crazy good.
After this we made our way to the airbnb location, "Mirabooka Bed and Breakfast".
I rate this place 11/10. Yeah, it was THAT good. I'm not even exaggerating.
It was pretty much a shed on someone's farm, but it was such a good stay. The owner had lit the fireplace a couple hours before our arrival to keep the house nice and toasty for us, the view from our windows was magnificent, rolling hills with cows grazing across the river..
She had left us ingredients in the fridge to make our own breakfast, a complimentary bottle of wine, all the amenities we would ever need.
Handmade soaps on the bed, bathrobes and extra towels.. everything.
My favourite part? Our own hot tub jacuzzi on the balcony overlooking the view.
Holy. I was losing my mind over how nice the place was. There wasn't any wifi or TV, just us two spending good quality time together and enjoying each others company. And Stranger Things season 2. But I'll get to that later. Hahah..
We decided to cook ourselves dinner and stay in for the night, since we had booked a dinner at "The Olfactory Inn" for the next night.
Treated ourselves to a nice homecooked steak, and hopped in the spa for a super relaxing night in.
We got up in the morning nice and early to prepare ourselves breakfast - Bacon, eggs and tomato on toast, fresh milk and orange juice all provided by the owners- and thoroughly enjoyed our breakfast and the views. Damn Australia, you're so beautiful.
Then we had a super energizing morning spa! Haha, really made good use of the spa for sure. I love the bubbles and the jacuzzi action! Leaning towards having one when we move out together haha.
We headed off to the next winery on our list- Longview Wineyard.
Hands down my favourite winery of the trip. The views were AMAZING. Holy crap I can't even describe. Such a beautiful place, with friendly staff and a super fancy cellar door tasting room. Holy moly. I wish I could go back and see it once again. I'll definitely try to.
There was a wedding planner setting up the function room for a wedding and we had abit of a chat with her about the winery as a wedding venue. I would absolutely love to have a wedding at Longview, I would highly recommend anyone check it out if you're looking for a place.
Downside though, would be the distance from Adelaide, its abit of a drive from town and if you're getting people drunk at a wedding, you want to be somewhere close where you can call an Uber right? Haha also they hold about 150-180 max, so we'd have to see how big our guestlist would be.
Damn, look at me talking like I'm engaged. I'm not, but it is definitely on the cards, as we've discussed many times. You might think I sound like the crazy gf (which I totally am), but everytime it was always Simon that would start talking to the manager about potential wedding venues. Haha.
Again. How lucky am I?
Ended up buying a couple bottles of red again, adding more to our small collection.
Next stop- Lake Breeze.
Upon recommendation by the lady at Longview, we had to check it out for ourselves, hearing how amazing it is.
But unfortunately, this was my least favourite stop. The man who served us hardly looked at us and barely knew anything about the wines he was giving us to taste. We didn't really appreciate how bad the service was, but at that point we were both super hungry. Tasted a couple of red and chose one that we thought was ok, it was certainly the better one out of the ones we had tasted.
Ordered some salt and pepper squid (Simon's fav), and a haloumi salad.
Boy were we disappointed. As you can see by the photo, the meals were nothing to jump for joy about. Tasted like very low-end food, ingredients straight out of a packet. They squirted sweet chilli sauce over the squid for god's sake. Who does that. Ruined it. These ain't a bowl of wedges, don't put sweet chilli sauce over it!
Maybe I'm being harsh, but I was not impressed haha. Hey, a girl's gotta eat though right?
Not wanting to end the afternoon on a disappointed note, we drove to another nearby winery- The Angus Plains Estate.
Albeit a small, unassuming place, we ended up having a really nice time. Spent the rest of the afternoon chatting to each other, and its crazy to say that after knowing someone for 8 years, we still learn new things about each other all the time. Still plenty of stories to tell, feelings to share and memories to look back on.
Some couples say that after being together a while they have nothing else to talk about. But when you have someone that you just click with and are completely open with, having a discussion about literally anything is always possible, and always satisfying.
After a quick power nap back at the cottage, we had dinner at a fancy little place in Strathalbyn called "The Olfactory Inn". It was an expensive dinner, I won't deny.. but the reviews were so good that we had to try it while we were in the area.
Unfortunately by then we were both very wined-out and couldn't really enjoy the wine feels like we usually do on the occasion that we go to a fancy restaurant.
The food was very good but to be honest, I think I am over expensive dinners. Next wine trip I reckon we will have all our dinners at home, I generally feel happier when we can totally be ourselves. The restaurant had an odd atmosphere too, especially as there was a table of extremely loud girls laughing their brains out and talking using their 'outdoor' voices LOL. I feel like an old grumpy woman. Gg.
Back at home we exchanged our cards- We both decided that we wouldn't buy each other gifts because gift-giving becomes more of a chore the more often you do it - Birthdays, Valentines, Christmas, Anniversaries.. No way you can keep up.
We've decided to buy gifts only on Birthdays from now, since we would rather spend the money elsewhere. Plus, the Christmas budget is mostly spent on getting gifts for each of our family members too, it all becomes abit out of hand! Wedding anniversaries, we would probably get gifts on significant years ie 1, 5, 10 etc haha We'll see.
Although we landed on card-giving, he got abit creative and wrote me super long letters inside each of these bottles, signifying one bottle describing each year we've had together.
How bloody cute is that.. ♥
I'm always a sucker for creativity and thoughful-ness :P
Oh right, although I swear we did so many things and fit alot into our itinerary, somehow we managed to start and finish season 2 of Stranger Things! HAHA We're crazy, yup. We just started watching and couldn't stop. We watched half of it one night before bed and then the other half on the next night after dinner. It was insanely good by the way. Can't recommend it enough. The actors they've chosen- although mostly young kids, were perfect. Such exceptional acting.
Needless to say we had an AH MAAAAY ZING weekend in the hills, and I can't wait to do more wine trips in the future.
It is most definitely a 'once-in-a-while' type vacation, as our wallets were much lighter after the trip. It all starts to add up once you're on a roll and keep finding wines that you really enjoy and want to take home for your own stash. Not to mention all the food! Hahah But it was worth every dollar.
You can't put a price on experience :)
So after a good two hours sitting here at my desk my back is starting to hurt and my elbow is creaking?! Haha Way to sound like an old woman again. But I finally got my story down and extremely happy that I can one day read back to this weekend and enjoy it all over again :)
I can't wait.