South Australia's wine growing Barossa Valley
is a 90-minute drive from Adelaide
, but it's much faster by helicopter.
There's something about the whirring of helicopter blades that makes people want to fly in one.
Kelly Landry was lucky enough to hop on a Barossa Helicopters pub crawl, piloted by sisters Billy-Jo and Bridgette Kies locally known as The Barossa Chopper Chicks. Their family arrived in the valley from Germany in the mid-1800s so they know the area and its history very well.
First stop was the Mount Mary pub, north-east of Lyndoch. It's all that remains of the old railway and logging town. There are some historical buildings including the old station, station master's building and school house. It has a population of only three including the dog.
The flight path went over Jacob's Creek in the heart of the valley. It produces one of Australia's most famous international wine brands and its history is blended with award-winning building showcases of environmental design.
Nuriootpa is home to Maggie Beer, legendary cook and writer. Visit the farm and you will surely be tempted by the range of goodies, including limited edition seasonal produce. Customers love to browse, sample, grab a signed book for inspiration at home or just take in the views over a coffee or one of the wines on offer. The Beers have been vignerons of the valley for more than 25 years and offer a full range exclusive to the cellar door. Cooking demonstrations take place at 2pm every day.
Trevor Jones of Kellermeister Wines is an award-winning winemaker. His winemaking career began in 1977 and you can sample his fine wines at the cellar door. Kelly particularly enjoyed Trevor's sparkling red called The Devil You Know.
Your choice in the mudbrick and recycled timber cellar door includes shiraz, port, riesling, sauvignon blanc and cabernet merlot.
There's usually room in the chopper to load a couple of cases of Trevor's best.