Old Reynella is the business hub of Reynella, a suburb of Adelaide, 20 km south of the Adelaide GPO. There are numerous shops, restaurants and cafes as well as a hotel, motel, wine cellar and other services. The Reynella township was founded in 1854.
Birthplace of South Australian wines
Reynella was the birthplace of the South Australian wine industry. Shortly after his arrival in 1838, John Reynell took up land and established Reynella Farm. He planted some of the first vines in the colony along with wheat and other crops and had sheep and cattle. His vines produced the first South Australian commercial wine in 1842.
Reynell Wines Story
As Reynell’s business prospered, the family transferred from the original basic home to the new substantial homestead. Reynell built the impressive Chateau Reynella. The site of the original home is marked by four huge pine trees with a memorial plaque on the northern side of Panalatinga Creek, opposite Stony Hill. His latter homestead and Chateau Reynella became part of the Hardy Wine Group, now Constellation Wines.
In the early 1900s Grandson Carew Reynell joined the family business and was an enthusiastic member. The young Reynell took a particular interest in making brandy, which was easily exported. By 1909 he had developed Reynella's famous 'hospital' brandy, which quickly became the leading brandy in Australia. He installed new stills and equipment, and expanded plantings. The substantial buildings are now part of the St Francis Motel complex.
The Railway Arrives
In 1912 the Adelaide to Willunga Railway line reached the township, ending the twice daily stagecoach. The line closed in 1969 and is now a footpath and bicycle trail.
In 1914 Carew Reynell joined the Australian Imperial Forces and landed at Galipoli in May 1915. He was killed leading the charge against the Turks in August 1915, along with half his regiment.
Old Reynella is a pleasant little township with a leafy park in the centre of town. As well there is a lake at the rear of the Reynella Shopping Complex with a menagerie of ducks that call it home.
A heritage walk meanders around the town.
Ask locally for a booklet.