Colonel William Light, who surveyed the city of Adelaide in 1836, made his way northeast to the Barossa Valley, which he named after an English victory in the south of Spain during the recent Napoleonic Wars. Later, when William Jacob surveyed the Barossa in 1839, he and his brother John took up land in the Hundred of Moorooroo; a word derived from the aboriginal meeting of two waters The two waters involved were the North Para River and a creek, which fed into it. The creek was later named Jacob’s Creek after William Jacob. Today, the Jacob brothers small cottages still stand, overlooking Jacob's Creek.
In 1846 a German immigrant, Johann Gramp, purchased land further up stream. A year later he planted the Barossa Valley's first commercial vineyard, on the banks of Jacob's Creek. At the original site by the creek, which meanders through the folds of the Barossa Ranges, Johann Gramp's cellar still stands, preserving the heritage of Australia's most enduring wine enterprise.
A major catalyst for this success came in 1976, with the introduction of a striking Shiraz Cabernet Malbec from the 1973 vintage. It was named after the site of Johann Gramp's first vineyard on the banks of Jacobs Creek. The first name in the Barossa and the Orlando company's founding winemaker, the Gramps range embodies Orlando's Barossa origins and heritage.
Today, the mission for Jacobs Creek is simply to improve the quality of wines with each passing vintage. Jacob Creek's viticulturists foster best practice at every step, from the selection of the best clonal planting material to the delivery of mature grapes at harvest. Through the ongoing management of water distribution, nutrition of the vines, canopy management to protect the berries, to control of pests and microclimatic conditions, the entire team are dedicated and professional.
The focus is to produce and preserve the maximum amounts of varietal flavours with an appropriate balance of natural sugars and acidity that best suit the Jacobs Creek wine styles. This has to be achieved in an environmentally sustainable manner. The Jacobs Creek nursery has supplied vines multiple vineyard developments and contracted growers throughout Australia. These vineyards in turn have produced high quality grapes, and ultimately the best wine.
Jacob's Creek has been the most popular brand in Australia, as well as Australia's leading export brand for more than a decade, widely recognised as spearheading the country's export growth. Jacobs Creek Orlando was rewarded for its international success in 1993, named Australian Exporter of the Year - a title strongly contested by companies from all industries. More than 80% of Jacob's Creek is now enjoyed in over 60 countries around the world - making it Australia's most popular wine and Australia's Top Drop. Jacob's Creek's fresh, easy drinking style and excellent quality has been extremely popular in both Australia, and around the world. An ongoing commitment to quality has resulted in Jacob's Creek being a regular winner at wine shows in Australia and overseas. Over the years, Jacob's Creek has been awarded over a thousand medals in wine shows globally.
In 1994, Jacob's Creek was honoured with one of the Australian Wine Industry's most prestigious prizes - the Maurice O'Shea Award. It was the first time the award had gone to a wine rather than a person and paid tribute to the enormous contribution Jacob's Creek has made to Australian wine exports. Today you can still walk the historic vineyard site, marvel at the magnificent River Red Gums that line the waterway, inspect Johann Gramps original cellar and feel a real sense of place and soul for Jacobs Creek.