With power and fortitude, eleven rows of 100 year old vines stand on a one acre vineyard highly elevated in the Eden Valley (1800ft). The sun is ample, yet the grapes rest overnight in the cool breeze, ensuring an extended ripening period and dense fruit fl avor. The grapes are handpicked and undergo whole berry fermentation in small steel open fermenters. Gentle basket pressing occurs in one single press of up to 24 hours, resulting in a silky texture and fine tannins. Aging takes place in new (30%) and old (70%) French puncheons for 18 months.
|Iconic historic winery
Chateau Tanunda is the Barossa.
This majestic bluestone winery and vineyard property is a living testament to the colorful history and pioneering spirit attached to Australia’s pre-eminent wine region. Now, thanks to the passion and dedication of its new owners, the Geber family, this icon Barossa estate is celebrating a new lease on life.
Built in the late 1880s, Chateau Tanunda is:
Home to some of the earliest plantings of vines in the Barossa Valley, dating back to the 1840s
Australia’s largest (37,674 square feet) and oldest wine Chateau
A designated monument in Australia’s Register of State Heritage Places
Chateau Tanunda’s origins go back to the 1860s and the decimation of Europe’s vineyards by the phylloxera plague. Sensing opportunity in Europe’s pain, the three founders of Chateau Tanunda built a Bavarian-style Chateau dedicated to the production of fine quality wines.
This grand vision would become for a while the largest winemaking facility in the Southern Hemisphere.
European immigrants had been planting vines in the Barossa since the 1840s, so the region was a natural choice. The resulting wines, made from grapes produced by 560 local growers (paid a pound per gallon – a substantial sum at the time), were transported on company-owned ships to a wine-starved Europe.
Chateau Tanunda’s success was the Barossa’s success. For years it was the heart of Barossa winemaking. A veritable “Ivy League” of Australian winemakers worked or studied at the facility, including Max Schubert, the creator of Grange Hermitage; Prof. Soebels, Australia’s first qualified enologist; Bill Seppelt; Grant Burge; Geoff Merrill and others. In 1994, in recognition of its rich history, Chateau Tanunda was placed on the Register of State Heritage Places – but by then its glory days were a memory.
Abandoned by its then owner, Australian wine giant Southcorp, the property was a shell of its former grandeur. When John Geber chanced upon it in 1998, and bought it a day later, he embraced the challenge of restoring this magnificent property to its iconic status.