After establishing the South Australian Company, philanthropist and entrepreneur George Fife Angas employed Johannes Menge, gifted linguist and mineralogist, in the late 1830s to explore the local colony above and below the ground. After his expedition, Johanne wrote to George detailing the Barossa as ‘The Cream, the Whole Cream and nothing but the Cream'. After this positive advice, George assisted the passage of an entire European community brought from various Prussian provinces including German speaking settlers from Silesia (now part of Poland), to set up a piece of the ‘old world' in the ‘new world'. Following this movement, the tiny hamlet of Bethany was established in 1842, and was soon followed by other settlements thereafter.
The settlers were orderly, hard working people. They cleared land for mixed farming, built churches and schools and planted small vineyards, some of which have remained in the same family name until this day.
The Barossa we know today is a 1,970 square kilometer region, which encompasses the Barossa Valley and Eden Valley. The region contains four communities including Angaston, Lyndoch, Nuriootpa and Tanunda, and a collection of tiny hamlets in Bethany, Cockatoo Valley, Eden Valley, Greenock, Keyneton, Light Pass, Marananga and Seppeltsfield, Mount Pleasant, Penrice, Rowland Flat, Springton, Stockwell, Truro and Williamstown. This type of settlement is unique in Australia and is a wonderfully preserved enclave of British and Prussian heritage.
The Barossa's strength and success has thrived on this difference. Over 150 years about 750 expert Vignerons have blended their knowledge of the land and its climate with modern viticultural practice, creating a partnership with the 50 large and small wineries whose specialist skills make the most of the superb fruit.
The Barossa is unlike any other wine region in Australia or the world.
The Barossa is not a new world wine region like Chile or United States. Nor is it fettered by centuries old restrictions as in Europe. The first settlers used their European experience and, over 150 years, their descendants have adapted it to suit the soil and climate. Through such energy and innovation they have developed a unique Barossa identity.
Barossa symbolizes quality and cultural complexity and guarantees integrity.