Australia’s Finest Lunch (Enjoy this lunch and help the Almanac)

This lunch is available to individuals or groups. It is $500 per person. More than half the fee will go to the Almanac’s crowdfunding campaign. To sign on email John Harms.


G’day Lovers of Wine, Food, Golf, Life and the Almanac

This is not just any lunch. This is a lunch – unavailable to the public – which is regarded as one of Australia’s finest.

Where is this? It’s in a winery in the Barossa Valley.

Imagine a gently rising slope among the vineyards and gums and nineteenth century buildings; a road climbing gently towards Kaiser Stuhl (the King’s Seat) in the hills to the east. On the left is a small winery – a collection of these old stone dwellings and sheds and some which have been added, in the same style, in recent times.

This is a famous independent winery where the wines are hand-made using traditional techniques. (To see where the vintage is completed – including the old engine, the ancient press, the slate tubs – and to feel the cool ambience is worth a trip alone). This vintage shed does not produce huge volumes of wine, yet its Shiraz is the eighth most collected bottle in Australia, and a number of the wines rank highly on Langton’s list.

The lunch is usually only available to long-term customers of the winery. It is a meandering all-afternoon, six-course affair.

Your group will join 12 other people who have travelled from around Australia (and the world) especially for the occasion. Some will be returning, having honoured the vow they made when being poured into the taxi on leaving the last time.

The afternoon begins in a private tasting area with an old fireplace (beautiful in the winter). Here a few sparkling shirazes fill the room with the fraternal good will which characterise the afternoon.

Then you move down, under the shade of the pepperina trees, towards the walled courtyard and the stone building where the single table is set for 16. Very simple.

The wine: a selection of vintage wines –  beaut whites, big Barossa reds (going back to the last millennium), a sticky, some more bubbles – one wine accompanies each course.

The food: everything is grown in the vineyard’s garden. Everything. That’s part of the point. It depends on what is in season. Classic style, bringing traditional influences, but diverse as well. When I last sat at the table pomegranates were in season and inspired a northern African dish.

The commentary: minimal. There is no theatre in this. Merely the gathering of souls. And a friendly voice to give a brief explanation of the food and the wine which accompanies it.

The afternoon: if anything will give rise to fine conversation and good cheer, this is it. If you ever need to find a way to believe in the world and its people again, this is the place to do it.

I have enjoyed this lunch a number of times, and I would like nothing more than to have the opportunity to introduce you to something which is as pure as I can imagine. When I think of what I would like the Almanac to be, I think of the principles on which this winery and this lunch are founded. And how true its people have been to those principles.



For more details email me: [email protected]

PS.  And then there is the golf.

Tanunda Pines is an outstanding golf course on the ridge above Rowland Flat. The layout is excellent. The course with its huge gums and Santa Anna fairways is a delight to play.

So treat your soul to lunch and golf.



If you are already hooked and want to grab this opportunity then head over to Pozible, but again, please email me via the address above if you have any questions at all.


About John Harms

JTH is a writer, publisher, speaker, historian. He is publisher and contributing editor of The Footy Almanac and He has written columns and features for numerous publications. His books include Confessions of a Thirteenth Man, Memoirs of a Mug Punter, Loose Men Everywhere, Play On, The Pearl: Steve Renouf's Story and Life As I Know It (with Michelle Payne). He appears (appeared?) on ABCTV's Offsiders. He can be contacted [email protected] He is married to The Handicapper and has three school-age kids - Theo, Anna, Evie. He might not be the worst putter in the world but he's in the worst four. His ambition was to lunch for Australia but it clashed with his other ambition - to shoot his age.


  1. Skip of Skipton says

    Sounds fantastic, John. Probably a tad too couth for my liking and also golf.

    We had a Pomegranate tree at the house I was born into at Williamstown.

    I gave consideration to a small (is there any other kind) operational Pomegranate garden that was for sale 50km up river from Mildura only a year or so ago. Sort of a ‘desert change’ if you will.

    A fine fruit once you accustom to the bitterness. And healthy.

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