by Krysten Barros, Marketing Coordinator
For those who don't have a clue who I am... I'm the middle monkey on the barrel (above), the one who is usually behind the camera and I plan to keep it that way!
2020...no comment necessary.
It's already May, and it definitely has not been business as usual for the Brokenwood team! We are currently working hard with a 'hibernation' crew until we reopen our Cellar Door... which, fingers crossed, won't be too far away!
As I scroll through social media feeds, there has certainly been a positive outcome amidst the doom and gloom of the COVID-19 pandemic. Businesses have been catapulted into the digital world, a realm, for some, that is daunting and out of their comfort zone. Creativity is at the forefront and marketing teams are faced with new challenges, forced to move quickly to 'think outside the box', re-invent themselves, entertain and engage with interesting content and adapt to our current world of isolation, 1.5 metre distancing and social restrictions.
The Hunter Valley community has certainly shown their strength, with locals supporting each other, businesses forming new partnerships to offer food and wine packs, the Chefs revealing their secret recipes from their home kitchens....and the list goes on.
Brokenwood have never said no to a challenge, and it certainly has been an exciting time for us as we have transformed our Cellar Door experiences into a digital world of Zoom, Instagram TV, virtual wine tastings and new ways of offering you a view of Brokenwood you don't usually see!
My iPhone is now glued to my hand, I have downloaded at least 5 new apps for video and image editing (oh...and Tik Tok!) and I am 100% certain our Senior Winemaker aka Brokenwood's Poster Boy, Stuart Hordern, is sick of me pestering him to jump in front of the camera.
Lastly, please keep posting, keep being crazy (and real!) on social media and of course keep showing us your #brokenwoodbunkers!
Every week we will be virtually visiting one Hunter Valley vineyard with Stuart Hordern.
First stop - Mistress Block Vineyard.
Our Mistress Block Vineyard Shiraz is always highly sought after and usually sells out as soon as we release the wine to our Single Vineyard Wine club members. To join our Single Vineyard Club, click here.
Brokenwood Wines has recently joined a selected group of wineries across the world to assist in the promotion of wine tourism globally. We have been featured in an article by Swedish wine magazine vinjournalen.se and listed on winetourism.com as one the top wineries to visit in New South Wales.
A message from our Chairman, Pete Draney
At the end of June this year, Iain Riggs (“Riggsie” to so many) is stepping down from his roles as Managing Director and Chief Wine Maker at Brokenwood. Riggsie and the Brokenwood board have agreed that “it’s time” to pass the baton to the extraordinarily capable team at Brokenwood that is Riggsie’s legacy. He won’t be leaving Brokenwood. He’ll remain a Director and, as a Consultant, he’s agreed to continue to provide Brokenwood with his experience and expertise whenever we need it.
He has led the rise and rise of Brokenwood since the mid-1980s with singular fervour, dedication and ability, through the good times and the bad times. So many in the wine industry have watched in awe as he and his team turned Brokenwood from a weekend hobby into an icon Australian winery.
Just look around Brokenwood at Pokolbin in NSW’s Hunter Valley and you’ll be welcomed at one of Australia’s premier wineries and its spectacular cellar door and restaurant complex. The words “Brokenwood”, “Riggsie” and “Fine Australian wine” are interchangeable to thousands of wine loving Aussies and indeed many from overseas as well.
He’s a multi-award winner too. In 2003, Iain was awarded the Graham Gregory Award for outstanding service to the NSW wine industry and at the 2013 Gourmet Traveller Wine Magazine Winemaker of the Year Awards honoured Iain with the Len Evans Award for Leadership. In 2016, the Australian Women in Wine Awards recognised Iain and Brokenwood Wines as the Workplace Champion of Change for a long history of promoting women within the workplace.
Today, Iain is Chairman of Trustees of the Len Evans Foundation that conducts the prestigious week-long Len Evans Tutorial, and current Chairman of the Shanghai International Wine Challenge.
In June of 2018 Iain was named as a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) in recognition of his significant service to oenology as a Winemaker, to the development of the Australian wine industry, and to the promotion of the Hunter Valley region.
Iain is the driving force behind Brokenwood’s flagship wine, the Graveyard Vineyard Shiraz and its promotion as a unique Single Vineyard Shiraz. Rated as Exceptional in the Langton’s Classification of Australian Wine, it is still the only Hunter Valley Shiraz to feature. A number of other premium Brokenwood Shiraz feature in the portfolio including the Mistress Block Vineyard Shiraz, Verona Vineyard Shiraz, Wade Block 2 Vineyard Shiraz and the Indigo Vineyard Shiraz. Iain is also a great promoter of Hunter Valley Semillon with the highly acclaimed ILR (Iain Leslie Riggs) Reserve Semillon as the Brokenwood flagship white.
Brokenwood has made a range of sweet styles over the years using Semillon, Riesling and Gewürtztraminer. This wine is a 'blast from the past' following the first Late Picked Semillon made in 1983. This wine has lifted citrus and tropical fruit aromas. The palate is rich but has great zesty acidity to balance the sweetness. Perfect to accompany a fruit platter or served chilled from the fridge on a sunny afternoon.
Lovely depth of colour along with purple tints due to the dry year and slightly riper fruit. Verona Vineyard Shiraz is always characterised by the soft sweet plum pastille fruit note. This carries to the palate with background vanillin oak with most of the wine in a 2700L cask. Fine ripe tannins add to the fruit density, with some liquorice notes and persistent after taste. A Shiraz to age for many years.
The colour is a very appealing coral pink. Shiraz has a lifted red spice element to its aroma and this dominates with an almost rose water background. The palate has vibrant red fruits and a dry finish, and while technically a red wine, has plenty of zesty acid. A wine to be enjoyed over the next year or so.
Superb colour with dark red and purple hues. Lifted aromas of red fruit and ginger spice. While there is some oak, it is very much in the background. Soft entry on the palate, fine tannins and perfect acid carry through to the finish. A typical medium bodied Hunter Valley Shiraz that will give drinking pleasure now and over the long term.
At 6 years of age on release, the colour is starting to deepen to a light gold. Evolving aromas of bees wax and vanillin. A softening palate of Bickford lime cordial characters with fresh citrus zest on the finish. This wine is beautiful now and will continue to develop for many years.
2019 Indigo Vineyard Pinot Noir, Beechworth VIC
Beautiful medium density colour and lovely, complex aromas of dark cherry and Campari-like notes. These characteristics follow through to the palate showing great balance, with flavours of charred oak and savoury, ‘forest floor’ characters that carry through to the finish. A Pinot Noir that will age well over the medium to long term.
The warmer weather has resulted in great fruit intensity. The colours in 2013 are outstanding, lots of luminous green tints. On release at nearly 6 years bottle age, there is a hint of development with toast and brioche notes. Flavours of lime juice cordial, lemon zest and the tangy acidity aids the long finish. A beautiful example of Hunter Semillon – perfect now or over the next 10 years.
2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot
Quite a dense colour with deep red hues. Lifted Christmas cake aromas with red pastille jube notes. The sweet Cabernet Sauvignon fruit on the palate is balanced by the dry ripe tannins. Dark plum Merlot flavours and sweet background oak,making this wine immensely enjoyable.
IN MEMORY OF GLENDEN HOWARD
We would like to take this opportunity to honour the life of Glenden Howard who sadly passed away recently. Glenden was the fifth generation to work the Somerset property where we source fruit for the Howard Vineyard Semillon. Glenden grew grapes for multiple Hunter Valley wineries, which have made their way into many Trophy winning wines.
Vibrant in colour – a touch more than usual due to the sunshine. Lovely florals and lemon grass aromas. Mouth filling flavours of pear and lemon pith balancing the zesty acid backbone. The aromas and fruit weight belie the 10.8% alcohol and reconfirms that the Hunter Valley produces fruit at optimal ripeness and much lower sugar levels. A classic Hunter Valley Semillon to enjoynow or will age gracefully over many years.
2019 Indigo Vineyard Tempranillo
Mid density colour, with youthful purple hues. Lifted red berry and red jube fruit aromas carry to the palate with a low acid and soft tannin finish. Sweet, earthy and dark cherry flavours. A complete wine to be enjoyed over the medium to long term.
Perfect, pale green colour and lifted grapefruit aromas. The minimal oak sits nicely with the fine, juicy citrus flavours on the palate accompanied by subtle bran meal. The driving force of this wine is the acidity – long and pure. Approximately 90% from Beechworth and the balance from Orange, the final components of this wine basically selected themselves. Another top-notch vintage!
A perfect mid-density colour with light purple tints. Red fruit aromas of cherry and strawberry. Dusty hints and vanillin oak compliment the pastille fruit flavours. Fine ripe tannins and lovely acidity carry through to a clean, long finish.