Seppeltsfield has unveiled its new winemaking team as it celebrates the release of its luxury wine collection.
The 169-year-old estate is embarking on a new chapter, an expanded range of contemporary Barossa still wines. The winemaking team behind the still wine range includes Warren Randall, Fiona Donald, Charlie Seppelt, Matthew Pick and Kingsley Fuller.
The team is led by Len Evans Tutorial scholar and Baron of the Barossa, Fiona Donald, as Chief Winemaker, who has more than 30 years’ experience, and is celebrating her 11th vintage at the winery this year.
More recently joining her is Senior Winemaker and fifth generation of Seppeltsfield’s founding family, Charlie Seppelt. Seppelt has completed 30 vintages to date domestically and internationally, and is also a Len Evans Tutorial Scholar. Alongside them is Senior Winemaker, Matthew Pick, coming from a strong pedigree working for leading wineries in both Australia and Austria. The team is spearheaded by Warren Randall, Seppeltsfield, Executive Chairman and Proprietor, who has more than 43 years of winemaking experience globally. Randall was recognised with the Len Evans Award in 2015.
Working with the Seppeltsfield winemakers is Group Viticulturist, Kingsley Fuller. Kingsley oversees Seppeltsfield’s Barossa vineyard holdings – the largest single cache of luxury plantings in the region.
Two tiers of luxury red wines have been released.
The ‘Bench Blends’ tier includes the 2018 ‘No. EC4’ Barossa Cabernet Sauvignon Shiraz, an expression of the definitive Australian red varietal blend. Alongside ‘No. EC4’ is a more contemporary expression of traditional Portuguese varieties – 2019 ‘No. EC3’ Barossa Tinta Cao, Tinta Amarela, Touriga. Red varietal blends carry an ‘EC’ (East Cellar) number which were first released by Seppeltsfield’s founding family in the 1960s and formed the inspiration for the range.
A step up from ‘Bench Blends’ is the ‘Grounds’ range – single vineyard Barossa Shiraz expressions. The range takes inspiration from the Barossa Grounds project – a comprehensive study of the district’s sub-regionality.
Led by the Barossa Grape & Wine Association, the project brings together winemakers, grape growers and soil and climatic science experts, to evaluate and identify the variations in Shiraz wine expression across the various parishes of the region.
Seppeltsfield’s 2018 vintage bottlings include ‘The Easting’ Barossa Shiraz, and ‘The Westing’ Barossa Shiraz, from estate-owned vineyards in Eden Valley, the Barossa’s high country in the East, and Western Barossa grounds. Expect to see wines released from four points of the compass in future vintages.
Donald said: “It is an exciting time at Seppeltsfield as we progressively expand our still wine collection upward, each tier and wine having a clear purpose and reflective of our philosophy. We have the best combination of highly passionate people, superior vineyard holdings, our unique 1888 Gravity Cellar and history unlike no other.
“What’s more, a dynamic tourism precinct in the Barossa for visitors to come and discover our collection of wines and learn about our story”.
The winemaker has also confirmed a “Seppeltsfield Icon Program” is underway, with releases set to be unveiled over the coming years.
The luxury collection of wines are available at the Seppeltsfield Cellar Door in the Barossa or via Seppeltsfield.com.au and can be found in fine wine retailers and on-premise nationally. The ‘Grounds’ tier is exclusive in retail to Seppeltsfield Cellar Door and Langton’s.
Seppeltsfield winery to develop hotel
Plans for a new $50 million six-star luxury hotel and day spa at the winery were also lodged with Light Council in April.
If successful, the 12-storey ‘Oscar Seppeltsfield’ hotel will have around 70 rooms, including suites and penthouses, with a private balcony for every room, and open in 2022.
“Oscar will complete the grand vision of our tourism master plan for Seppeltsfield to become the most desirable epicurean destination for tourists worldwide,” said Randall. “We wanted to create a national icon for South Australia – a Sydney Opera House for the Barossa.
“The hotel will be positioned gently in the middle of the Great Terraced Vineyard, surrounded by century old bush vines, an amazingly tranquil location and a short walking distance to the world-class Seppeltsfield tourism village.
“In 2019, Seppeltsfield was judged as one of the top 50 vineyards in the world. The addition of this luxury hotel will elevate it to one of the top five vineyards in the world, in turn lifting Australia’s international wine reputation.”