Est 2002

At The Pawn Wine Co. we’re not driven by regal ambition, but a strong resolve to rescue unique grape varieties from becoming lost as blending tools in the corporate wine game.

The Pawn’s passionate moves have rebelled against the trend, realising the potential alternative wine styles and allowing them to shine within the wine industry.

By staying small and hands-on, we can continue our crusade to create uniquely handcrafted, artisinal wines from the cool climate of the Adelaide Hills & Langhorne Creek.


Artisanal wines that speak of their origin.

Our vineyard has an intensive landscape of hills, valleys and flats. This complex landscape creates an infinite array of micro-climates that we match to varieties to produce grapes with complex and refined flavour profiles.

The El Desperado Whites and Rose’s clever design changes with the temperature of the wine, displaying a skull when the wine is at room temperature; when chilled below 15 degrees, a beautiful flowers appears over the skull while the leaves turn from brown to green.

Élevage is the French term for the progression of wines from adolescence to maturity, under attentive winemaking. Wines only spend a short time aging in fine French, American and Hingarian barriques in our cellar.


35 35°11'07.0''S
138°48'32.9''E °11'07

m above sea level

The Adelaide Hills has enormous variation between the high daytime temperatures and a low night-time temperatures during the ripening period. This variation has an amazing effect on our grapes, producing high acid and a high sugar content, as the exposure to sunlight increases the ripening qualities, while the sudden drop in temperature at night preserves the balance of natural acids in the grape.

Another shared aspect of the terroir on our vineyards is that the soil makes up a mere 5 percent of our lands soil spectrum. The Hills have some of the oldest soils in the world and consists of shattered iron stone, providing the perfect balance of drainage and moisture retention.

Our vineyards are situated in Macclesfield, on the southern end of the Adelaide Hills. A historically significant town settled in 1840, it is nestled amongst rolling hills

Winter is cold and wet in the Hills, so we prune our vineyard as early as we can to try and avoid the rain and chill.

The number of chilling hours required by grapes is about 150 chilling hours. This is much less than required by other fruits in the Adelaide Hills such as cherries which need up to 800 hours of chilling.


The Pawn Wine Co.

The pawn (♙♟) is the most numerous piece in the game of chess, and in most circumstances, also the weakest. The Pawn Wine Co represents all the small, artisanal, family owned wineries who often feel like just pawns in the global Wine game. We the small, boutique producers are sometimes perceived to be a sacrificial part of the wine industry by the corporate giants, but beware….The game can be won by the seemingly insignificant Pawn.

There would be no game of chess if the Pawns refused to play.



The vineyard utilises best practice environmentally sustainable principles and is a member of the Sustainable Australia Winegrowers (SAW) Program, ENTWINE and is accredited under Freshcare.

The Pawn is strongly Independent and supports the small guys across our industry. If you are finding it hard to sometimes find our wines, that’s because we do not sell into the large corporate chains. Shop at your local independent retailer and ask for us there !

The folds and undulations of the Adelaide Hills create a wide range of mesoclimates. In seeking and exploiting these climatic differences, the vineyards tend to be small in area and often steep.

All our grapes are estate grown, all our wines are handmade in house, all our stories are real. We grow wines that faithfully express our terroir in the Adelaide Hills