Who we are
We are Robyn Dahl & Michael Lewis. We are ‘new’ South Australians. Michael was born in Germany of English parents and has travelled and lived in many countries including Malta and Egypt. He is an engineer and works in the sustainable energy sector. Robyn was born in New Zealand and left when she was 16. She has lived and worked in Australia and Tonga. Life-changing events were living through Cyclone Tracy in Darwin in 1974, sailing from New Zealand to Tonga with a 6 week old baby. Retraining from HR to becoming an English language teacher, first at Flinders University, then at The University of Adelaide.
As our blended family matured, we were drawn to grow and create something in the country – though we knew not what!
Check out our video from SA Life below;
What we did
We purchased an existing, four year old olive grove and vineyard in 2002. It was my dream to have an olive grove and Michael had always wanted a vineyard. The olives are now my ‘boys’ and the grapes his ‘girls’. We began the conversion to organic and bio-dynamic in early 2006 and achieved full certification with NASAA in 2009.
When we arrived in this area, I felt, for the first time in my life that I’d ‘arrived home’ and I feel firmly anchored to this land. I love this region with a passion that is difficult to explain. I love the dynamic community we live in, where there is a drive towards sustainability – even the big boys in the wine world are going, or have gone, organic. There isn’t one day that I don’t look out and say ‘wow’. We feel that we are truly living our dream in this very special part of the world.
Where is The Farm Willunga
We are located in the famed McLaren Vale wine region, on the beautiful Fleurieu Peninsula – two kms from Willunga village and 45 minutes from Adelaide.
The Farm Willunga is a short walk from the Willunga Farmers Market where you can stock up on provisions for a romantic private meal or head to one of the region’s famed restaurants. Surrounded by some of Australia’s best wineries, we are also only 10 minutes drive to the picturesque Port Willunga beach.
What is The Farm Willunga
Our aim is to provide a beautiful, healthy, sustainable environment to enjoy, along with our family, guests and the wider community. We start with the soil; working to nourish it, and in the bio-dynamic way we put back into the farm as much as we take off. This is in the form of on-farm composting, using reclaimed water and solar power – caring for, and nurturing the land. We look at a closed cycle where we avoid ‘outside’ inputs to the soil. Our business idea is similar; our café and retail area reflect what we grow, who we are and what we are about – the aim being; to touch, feel, see and taste South Australia and in particular our beautiful region. For example, our olive oil soaps and skincare are produced from our olive oil.
On the property we have a licenced café/restaurant open Friday – Sunday 8:30 – 4:30 and two high-end Bed & Breakfast apartments. Outside of those days we welcome bus groups by appointment. We also conduct tours of our property, where we explain what we do and how and why we do it. We love food, wine and art and as such, have a vibrant menu, ever-changing wine list and showcase local artists by having regular art exhibitions. We have bikes available for hire and we can arrange tours to the various wineries, beaches and other attractions. We have our own helipad and can even organise helicopter tours.
It’s all about you – we’ll be there as little or as much as you want – your pleasure is our pleasure.