Skip to main content

Ochota Barrels

Ochota Barrels

Adelaide Hills, Australia

Ochota Barrels




Adelaide Hills

sub Region

Basket Range


Warm Continental


Amber Ochota




Edit: In 2020, Ochota Barrels was devastated to announce the loss of their founder, winemaker and owner, Taras Ochota. Taras was an amazing human - smart, kind, generous, and fun. His punk rock mentality extended to how he approached the business and winemaking.

Taras helped drive a seismic shift that changed the way we think about Australian wine and through his craft he connected so many of us around the world. We are so grateful that he let us be a tiny part of his enormous life.

The History

Ochota Barrels is helmed by Amber Ochota in the Basket Range region of the Adelaide Hills in South Australia. The idea for/dream of Ochota Barrels came to form on a surf trip in a van that saw Amber and her late partner Taras touring some of the world's most renowned wine and surf regions. Particularly inspired by small, biodynamic producers in France, Amber strives to source organically or biodynamically grown fruit and craft interesting and balanced single varietal and single-vineyard wines that speak of their origins in the Hills.

After a mis-spent youth playing a rickenbakker bass in various punk bands (listen to Kranktus’ Heckler album), Taras became an Oenology graduate from Adelaide University, and developed his craft in numerous vineyards and cellars around the world to then settle with Amber on 9.6 steep gorgeous acres tucked away, deep in the Basket Range of the beautiful Adelaide Hills. Amber’s wine experience ranges from vintages in Italy, vineyard development and cellar door sales in the Adelaide Hills and coordinating production and wine analysis for Nordic Sea Winery in southern Sweden.

The Philosophy

Founded on a love of life, music and wine, Taras Ochota summarizes his experience and the essence that is Ochota Barrels: 

"In the past 22 years, I have worked in many parts of the world with many great winemakers (and of course lovely people) who have in some way influenced our wine style.

Whether it be the suave chain smoking white suited Italian, the obsessive compulsive tech-savvy Australian, the sex mad country and western listening Californian, or the French oenologist who thought that bright green three-quarter pants, a pink collar up shirt with a lemon vest was ‘très à la mode’ to see punk band, The Dead Kennedy’s. These are just a few of the equally appreciated, super creative, (sometimes bordering on psychotic) grape growing and winemaking lunatics that have shared their knowledge, wines, experience, heritage, houses, couches, tractors, cars, wineries, equipment and often many a cocktail from the esky. It is from this smorgasbord of collective experience that we have picked the eyes out to craft the Ochota Barrels wines.

A holistic approach from autumn to autumn in the vineyard, with the philosophy of going back to basics to create something delicious and unique with mother nature.

We are strongly drawn to and influenced by the small biodynamic producers we came across in the south of France. Organically farmed vineyards planted to earth that is alive, lo-fi technique and picking decisions made purely on natural acidity which hopefully contribute to a wine’s energy and nervous tension.

Texture is an important focus, manipulating mouth-feel with limited or extended time on skins including batonnage. Beautifully sculptured old bush vines with low yields and small berries, picked basically when you can’t stop eating them because they taste so delicious. There are no instruments on those sunrise vineyard walks, and if the stalks are piquant, whole bunches are included in our half tonne ferments. Controlled pigeage and hand cap-submersion retains purity of fruit, whereby the wild indigenous and spontaneous fermentation enhances complexity and artisan charm. However, an Occam’s Razor approach is still taken, as the expression of the vineyard is paramount. This is the reason we aim to make wines with attention to detail that are real and pure.

We are finding that those pretty nuances you experience directly from a fresh barrel siphon in our mid hills foggy winter are extraordinary… so we have been experimenting with much lower sulphur levels to find the perfect medium to suit each cuvée… so… stay tuned our beautiful wine loving friends. Basically, we just want to produce something delicious and gorgeous for all of us to enjoy with none of the nasties and more of the love." xx Taras Ochota


150+ Producers worldwide

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea.