Wrattonbully toasts epic wine show trophy haul!
South Australia’s Wrattonbully wine region has capped off its most successful year yet with a stunning performance in its local Limestone Coast Wine Show. The Wrattonbully region collected six trophies outright at this week’s 15th annual event, with a further two trophies going to varietal wines featuring Wrattonbully fruit. Wrattonbully Wine Region Association president, James Freckleton, described the success as unprecedented.
“The Limestone Coast is made up of seven different wine regions, so to be able to link Wrattonbully to eight of the 14 major awards really highlights the strength and extraordinary quality of the wines,” he said.
Fifteen of the record 61 gold medals awarded by judges also went to Wrattonbully, representing an almost 25 per cent share of the entire allocation. Chair of Judges, Jane Faulkner, said it’s Wrattonbully’s “year to shine”.
“Wrattonbully has always produced gorgeous fruit but it has often been overshadowed perhaps by Coonawarra - but not this time!” she said. “I think this really proves the point that if you’re caring about your site making gorgeous wine you’re going to be recognised.”
Pepper Tree Wines’ 2013 Pepper Tree ‘Block 21A’ Single Vineyard Wrattonbully Cabernet Sauvignon won the David Wynn Trophy for ‘Best Red Wine of Show’, the HR (Ron) Haselgrove O.B.E. Trophy for ‘Best Cabernet Sauvignon of Show’ and the ‘Best Individual Vineyard Wine’ Trophy at last night’s Trophy Presentation Feast held at The Barn, Mount Gambier. The wine went on to become the first single varietal to claim the Bill Redman Trophy for ‘Best Wine of Show’. Pepper Tree winemaker, Gwyn Olsen, described the achievement as “a fantastic accolade”.
“These wines should be speaking of place, they should be speaking of the soil that they’ve come from and the hard work that has gone into making that wine uniquely from that individual block,” she said. “It’s great to see that this wine from the one block expressive of that one block can still be named the best wine of show in terms of quality and provenance and I think it’s a great thing for Wrattonbully to see.”
Ms Olsen paid tribute to Balnaves Winery which manages the vineyard on behalf of Pepper Tree owner John Davis, with chief viticulturist Pete Balnaves awarded the highly coveted Arthur Hoffman Trophy for ‘Viticulturist of Best Wine of Show’.
“I know the hard work that Pete Balnaves and (Balnaves winemaker) Pete Bissell put into the vineyard there and I know how great the fruit looks, so it’s always one of those ones that you want to do really, really well because you understand the investment of time and energy that’s gone in right from the get go,” she said.
Another Pepper Tree wine - the 2014 Pepper Tree Limited Release Wrattonbully Tempranillo – particularly impressed guest judge Lim Hwee Peng from Singapore, who gave it the International Judges’ Award.
“It was a very pretty wine which doesn’t just have concentration of fruit; there is a real vibrancy with long lengthy flavour that isn’t overpowering, and I think it accurately represents what a Tempranillo variety can be,” he said.
“It was Wrattonbully’s year, and credit to Pepper Tree for what they’re doing because their wines are just on song at the moment,” Jane Faulkner added.
The Eric Brand Trophy for Best Shiraz went to the 2013 Jack Estate Shiraz, which boasts an exquisite Wrattonbully-Coonawarra blend. “We have the single grower up near Hynam in Wrattonbully and the Coonawarra portion comes from a number of sites throughout the sub-regions of Coonawarra,” explained Jack Estate winemaker Shannon Sutherland.
“Coonawarra probably gave it lovely freshness and Wrattonbully gives it a bit of richness to the palate, so the winemaker has put it together very, very well,” said judge David Morris. “It’s great in its youth, but there’s a lot of potential in the wine – it will go a long way.”
Meanwhile, the highly decorated 2006 Casella 1919 Cabernet Sauvignon was also produced from grapes grown in Wrattonbully and Coonawarra, and collected the Ewen Fergusson McBain Trophy for ‘Best Museum Wine’.
Wrattonbully Wine Region Association president, James Freckleton, said it was wonderful to see so many different varieties win accolades.
“The Wine Show results really highlight the versatility, consistency and growth of the region, with several new labels in the mix, and we are enormously proud to be able to celebrate these achievements,” he said.
Wrattonbully’s Gold Medal Tally – 2015 Limestone Coast Wine Show
- 2014 Patrick Estate Riesling
- 2014 Casella Young Brute Red Blend
- 2013 Cape Jaffa Epic Drop Shiraz
- 2013 Jack Estate Shiraz
- 2013 Pepper Tree ‘Elderslee Road’ Single Vineyard Wrattonbully Cabernet Sauvignon
- 2013 Stonefields ‘Block 22’ Cabernet Sauvignon
- 2013 Pepper Tree ‘Block 21A’ Single Vineyard Wrattonbully Cabernet Sauvignon
- 2013 Pepper Tree ‘Strandlines’ Wrattonbully Cabernet Shiraz
- 2013 Pepper Tree ‘Classics’ Limited Release Wrattonbully Cabernet Merlot
- 2012 Pepper Tree ‘Elderslee Road’ Single Vineyard Wrattonbully Cabernet Sauvignon
- 2012 Pepper Tree ‘Block 21A’ Single Vineyard Wrattonbully Cabernet Sauvignon
- 2010 Patrick Aged Riesling
- 2008 Malone Shiraz
- 2007 Casella 1919 Shiraz
- 2006 Casella 1919 Cabernet Sauvignon
For additional information or comment, please contact James Freckleton 0412 847 383. Digital images and videos will be posted on the Limestone Coast Wine Show Facebook page.
Pepper Tree Wines Winemaker Gwyn Olsen with their trophy haul