D’Arenberg, McLaren Vale, South Australia

When it comes to giving maximum quality at every price point, nobody does it better than d’Arenberg, an almost 100 year old family-owned winery in the Mclaren, about 40km South of Adelaide.

From the colourful head winemaker Chester Osborne to their off-the-wall, creative wine names and labels, to the wonderful variety of flavours in every bottle, d’Arenberg equates to personality and character in everything it does.

The climate in McLaren is fairly hot, although tempered by a refreshing breeze from the nearby Indian Ocean; as a result D’Arenberg focus on the grape varieties of the Southern Rhone which are suited to warm, dry growing conditions – Shiraz, Mourvedre and Grenache its main reds and Marsanne, Roussane and Viognier its key whites.

Many of the vines are over 40 years old, gnarled and thick-trunked. This gives extra concentration of fruit flavour and a clearer expression of the individual terroir where the grapes are grown.

In the winery, D’Arenberg are well known for foot-treading their grapes in open top fermenters, and for their use of traditional old basket presses, both of which allow gentle extraction of fruit flavours from the skins without too stringent tannins.