Ironically, it was Frank Potts' abilities as a sailor that led him to Langhorne Creek - and the life of a landlubber winemaker and vigneron.
He saw the potential of the region when he explored it in the 1850s, convinced that the stands of tall red gums promised fertile soils and reliable water.
Since Frank's journey Langhorne Creek's alluvial soils and surprisingly cool climate, nurtured by maritime breezes, has attracted many famous winemakers.
Langhorne Creek receives an average annual rainfall of just 380mm per year and flood events provide enough moisture in the rich deep soil profile of the flood plain to carry vines in these areas through the dry summer months. The majority of the vast vineyard plantings of the area use modern and efficient drip and sub-surface irrigation practices to maintain the water needs of the vines.
Access to water, coupled with cooling breezes from Lake Alexandrina that reduce evening temperatures and provide mild even growing seasons, help make Langhorne Creek an ideal wine growing region.
Despite this, much of the region's fruit went into multi-regional blends and wasn't acknowledged until the 1990s when a small group of long-term family growers - including Bleasdale - started promoting 100% Langhorne Creek wines.
Traditionally a red wine grape region best known for its full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon (and Cabernet blends) as well its elegant Shiraz, the region also produces exceptional white and fortified wines.
Langhorne Creek is now the centre of a vibrant grape growing and winemaking community which regularly wins national and international awards. Close to the boating, fishing and surfing attractions of South Australia's south coast, it is a great place to visit and taste at cellar door.