A picturesque S. C. Pannell Winery was the site of a fabulous array of music, food and wine on Sunday 13th November as Carl Cox and Eric Powell brought their ‘Mobile Disco; to Adelaide with very special guests, Grammy-winning hip hop legends, De La Soul.
Staged as a mini-festival (of sorts), the Mobile Disco showcased some of S. C. Pannell’s wonderful wines as well as an array of delicious, multiethnic street food.
With weather no guarantee, the event organisers prepared for the worst with ample undercover area in the form of marquees as well as waterproof ponchos available on request.
The rain held off for the most part however, and party-goers were not deterred, turning up in their thousands to enjoy the tastes, sights and sounds of the afternoon.
Despite a bit of a breeze and some intermittent overcast gloom, the sun seemed to peek through the clouds at opportune moments throughout the afternoon.
Enough about the weather, though; let’s talk about the wine! C. Pannell treated punters to a smorgasbord of its whites, reds, pinks and bubblies.
Notwithstanding a selection of four great whites, it was the Sauvignon Blanc that stood out from its counterparts; with its easy-going nature and just a hint of citrus zest, this particular ‘Savvy B’ was a huge hit among the age-diverse crowd.
Although the McLaren Vale region is perhaps more famous for its ability to produce stellar Shiraz and Grenache, as somewhat of an inexperienced wine drinker, the Pinot Noir was actually the more favourable red.
Perhaps it was the combination of great music and an infectious, jubilant atmosphere, but the Pinot seemed to explode on the palate before settling and leaving one begging for another taste.
Also on the menu, for the less vino-inclined, was an assortment of beers and cider. Always a crowd favourite, local craft brewer Pirate Life came to the party with its full-flavoured Pale Ale and summery IPA.
The bar staff were superbly amicable and service could be forgiven for being a little slow given the swarm of patrons flocking to the watering hole all day – and into the night.
In terms of lining for the stomach—an ever-important (and sometimes overlooked) accompaniment for any form of alcohol—there was a cavalcade of food vans lining the perimeter of the event with, quite literally, something for everyone.
In this writer’s opinion, the South American street food took the honours with a wonderfully flavoursome pulled pork and secret aioli burger served with crispy cassava chips.
To the music now, and of course Carl Cox and Eric Powell did their usual best; they kept the masses entertained throughout the afternoon with a well-mixed collection of music.
From Michael Jackson to Shania Twain and back with plenty of original work in between, their ability to keep the crowd engaged and on its feet for hours on end was truly a thing of wonder.
It was, however, the funky, flowy, flamboyant trio who stole the show.
Late afternoon saw the arrival of De La Soul to the stage, and boy, they did not disappoint.
Still making trailblazing hip hop music after 29 emphatic years on stage, the three New York natives brought their larger-than-life collective persona to a usually-quaint winery and turned it into an outdoor rave for a little under an hour.
A huge reception from the over-25s in the crowd, the trio clearly relished the opportunity to play to true fans in what some would call a musical backwater (they’d be wrong, of course), at one stage pulling a crowd member up on stage and personally thanking her for donating to their recent Kickstarter campaign in aid of the group’s ninth studio album.
Playing new music amongst old favourites like ‘Me, Myself & I’ and ‘Ring, Ring, Ring’, as well as a tribute to the late Phife Dawg of fellow stalwart hip hop group A Tribe Called Quest, De La Soul certainly stole the show—and the sun, which seemed to appear at their very whim—for a good portion of the afternoon.
The entire afternoon was, in fact, to some extent reminiscent of a microcosmic 2015/16 Falls Festival (minus the awful sight of the lavatories on day two); due to bushfires, the event was moved from picturesque Lorne to Mount Duneed Estate and festival-goers were treated to a four-day concert amidst the vines.
It’s difficult to come up with anything negative to say about S. C. Pannell’s first time hosting the Mobile Disco; it was a dazzling display of music, new and old, and an excellent, eclectic mixture of food and wine, all set to the perfect backdrop.
Photography by Richard Lyons for S.C.Pannell Wines