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The Schulz family's connection with Lot 1 in the Hundred of Moorooroo (and the shiraz vines planted on it by Johann Fiedler in 1847) dates back to 1865. In that year the family purchased the Barossa Valley property and, as well as tending to the vines, built a thriving butcher's shop business in a bluestone building.
In the financially turbulent 1930s, the butchers shop was leased to the Lindner family, the vineyard retained in Schulz family ownership. Twenty years on the building suffered the indignity of becoming a tractor shed; whether its conversion to an apricot drying shed in the 1970s was for the better is debatable, but its redemption in the maelstrom of the oversupply of red grapes that came to a head in 1987 could never have been predicted.
Incorporation of shiraz grapes into muffins; carbon fining stripping colour and flavour from Barossa red wines to produce miserable white wines; and grape prices below the cost of production led to the State Government Vine Pull Scheme. It provided an opportunity for Christie and then husband Peter Schulz (with two young children) to buy the vineyard and butcher's shop (in 1987) from third-generation owner John Schulz, tempted by the government scheme. To say it was a courageous decision barely does it justice.
Life is still full of challenges for smallish (20,000 cases) family wineries, but Turkey Flat has surmounted them all since its first vintage of shiraz in 1990. A recent vertical tasting of all 25 vintages (to 2014) underlined the reasons why this benchmark shiraz is held in such high regard. If there is one word to describe the wine it is integrity. While great care is taken in choosing the parcels to accompany the cornerstone of the fruit from the 1847 plantings, it has always been made with light hands in a classic medium-bodied style, growing old with grace.
And the butcher's shop? It's Turkey Flat's fully restored cellar door.
James Halliday - The Weekend Australian Magazine July 12 2014
Welcome to the old Schulz family butchers shop, now the heart of Turkey Flat and the home of our cellar door. This wonderful old bluestone building is tucked away on the edge of Tanunda, completely surrounded by our historic vineyards, dating back to 1847.
Gnarly vines, elegant lawns and impressive, old gum trees surround our modern winery and provide a stunning backdrop to experience our wines and hear our story.
We love to see visitors and can easily be found off the Bethany Road just south of Tanunda, but even if you can’t make a visit in person, we hope you can get a feel for our wines and what we are doing through this site.