05 Jun Off the Vine, Season 3, Ep 10


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d’Arenberg Vineyard: d’Arenberg is one of the most significant wineries in McLaren, and has been in the same family for four generations. The legacy of d’Arenberg started when Joseph Osborn purchased the original vineyards in 1912. Joseph worked for the great pioneering wine company, Thomas Hardy and Sons. He was prompted to buy his own vineyard when doctors advised that his son Frank’s poor health would be greatly improved by life on the land. Situated in the hills four kilometers north of the township of McLaren Vale, the climate is Mediterranean with cool wet winters and long dry summers. Fruit from the initial 96 acres was sold to local wineries. Joseph built his own cellars in 1927, with the first vintage being released the following year. The famous red stripe appeared in 1959 when third generation Francis d’Arenberg, universally known as d’Arry, took over managing the winery. Fourth generation Chester d’Arenberg took over as Chief winemaker in 1984. Many of the vines planted back in 1912 are still bearing fruit today. Although a number of the vineyards have been expanded and replanted the original vines were preserved and form the backbone of some of d’Arenberg’s premium wines. d’Arenbergs holdings have now grown to 345 acres. Vintage starts in early February and continues through to June for botrytis-affected fruit. Although summer temperatures can be hot, the vines benefit from the cooling influence of St. Vincent’s Gulf. Renowned wine critic Robert Parker commented that the portfolio of high quality wines produced by d’Arenberg amazed him.