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Wynns Coonawarra Estate
Author: James Halliday
Wynns Coonawarra Estate
The original winery that is now known as Wynns Coonawarra Estate was founded by Scottish pioneer John Riddoch. He planted vineyards in 1891 and completed the estate's three-gabled winery.
In 1951 Melbourne wine merchants Samuel and David Wynn purchased Riddoch's original vineyards and winery and renamed the property Wynns Coonawarra Estate.
The Wynns family recognised the intrinsic qualities of Coonawarra wines - their richness and intensity of fruit character - and set out to build an independent identity in the region.
They created the famous label that has made John Riddoch's winery one of Australia's best known buildings.
Today Wynns Coonawarra Estate is the region's best known wine producer and largest single vineyard holder, with the best and longest established vineyard sites in Coonawarra. Its wines are regarded as benchmarks for the district, lauded for their consistent quality and depth of flavour.
Coonawarra is a relatively tiny, cigar shaped strip about 15 kilometres long and just two kilometres at its widest point. Its most famous feature is the terra rossa soil, a rich red topsoil which lies over soft porous limestone. As the vines have to struggle and stress in extending the roots through the thin layer of terra rossa and limestone, the vine is limited to producing low yielding, intensely flavoured grapes.
Coonawarra's cool climate ensures a long ripening period that slowly builds up the intensity of flavours in the grape. The resulting wines are among Australia's greatest wines for their intensity, depth of flavour and excellent longevity.
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