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The History of Wynns Wines

Wynns Coonawarra Estate has a rich history that dates back to 1861 when John Riddoch, known as 'the Squire of Penola,' settled in the Coonawarra region. In 1890, Riddoch divided his land and established the Coonawarra Fruit Colony, offering four-hectare allotments for cultivation. Despite initial success with 95,000 vines and 10,000 fruit trees planted in the first year, the colony faced challenges due to its distance from major markets and unfavourable economic conditions. Riddoch passed away in 1901, leaving behind a struggling wine-producing area.

Revitalization and Recognition

Fortunately, in 1951, Samuel Wynn and his son David purchased the winery, which was on the verge of becoming a wool shed and sheep run. Although their initial goal wasn't profitability, David took over operations in 1953 and became the first Australian wine producer to use the term 'estate' to indicate the wine's regionality. The iconic triple-gabled winery, Chateau Comaum, was built in 1891 and became a prominent symbol for Wynns Coonawarra Estate. The woodcut illustration of the winery, created by artist Richard Beck, has adorned every label since then, making it one of Australia's most recognizable wine symbols.

Expanding Reputation and Quality

As Australians developed a taste for dry red table wines, Wynns consistently marketed Coonawarra Estate wines based on their variety and origin, establishing the Coonawarra district as a region known for exceptional wines. Over the next two decades, Wynns expanded its vineyard holdings, becoming the largest grower in the district by 1981 with 440 hectares under vine. This period also saw the release of wines bearing John Riddoch's name in 1982 and the revival of Michael Shiraz in 1990, a wine of exceptional quality that was only produced in outstanding years.

Winemaking Excellence and Milestones

In 1993, Sue Hodder joined Wynns as a winemaker, working alongside Senior Winemaker Peter Douglas. By 1998, Hodder had been appointed Wynns Senior Winemaker, leading the release of the winery's first single vineyard wines. Major vineyard rejuvenation projects commenced in 2002, covering 300 hectares of vines. Wynns Coonawarra Estate celebrated the 50th vintage of its iconic Black Label Cabernet Sauvignon in 2004, hosting a special tasting of 50 vintages for influential wine tasters. In subsequent years, the winery continued to innovate, introducing the V&A Lane range and implementing vineyard replanting projects using new rootstocks, international vine clones, and selections from top-quality vineyards.

Award-Winning Team and Continued Success

In recognition of their contributions, Sue Hodder and Sarah Pidgeon were jointly named 'Winemaker of the Year' at the 2016 ASVO Awards for excellence. Hodder also received the 'Women of Inspiration' award at the 2017 Women in Wine Awards. Wynns achieved another significant milestone when the John Riddoch Cabernet Sauvignon became one of the first Australian wines to launch through La Place de Bordeaux and be distributed by influential Bordeaux negociant houses, marking a new chapter for Australian wine in the international market.

Continuing Legacy and Unveiling New Possibilities

In 2021, Allen Jenkins, a longstanding viticulturist at Wynns, retired after leaving a profound contribution to the winery's success. Ben Harris took over as the leader of the viticulture team and was honoured with the 'Viticulturist of the Year' award at the 2021 ASVO Awards for Excellence. Sue Hodder, with her exceptional career, became a 'Fellow of the ASVO' on the same night. Chris Plummer also joined the team as a winemaker. In 2022, Hodder celebrated her 30th vintage at Wynns, showcasing her extensive experience and dedication to the craft. Additionally, the Reframed tier was launched, reflecting a creative renaissance inspired by Wynns' pioneering years.

Wynnsday Collection and Signature Style

Each year, Wynns Coonawarra Estate releases its luxury wines as part of the Wynnsday Collection. These wines embody the winery's history, excellence, and signature style that has made the Wynns label synonymous with quality and distinction.

Experience the Legacy of Wynns Wines

Discover the rich heritage and exceptional wines of Wynns Coonawarra Estate at The Reserve Cellar. Explore our extensive collection and experience the unique flavours that have made Wynns a true icon of Australian winemaking.

Place your order today and savour the legacy of Wynns wines.

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The Reserve Cellars. ABN 89621364994 Liquor License 196883. The Reserve Cellar supports the responsible service of alcohol. It is against the law to sell or supply alcohol to, or obtain alcohol on behalf of, a person under the age of 18 years. WARNING: Under the Liquor Act 1992, it is an offence to supply liquor to a person under the age of 18 years (Penalty exceeds $6,000). for a person under the age of 18 years to purchase or receive liquor (Penalty exceeds $500).

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