Calabria Family Wines buys brands

Australian winemaker Calabria Family Wines has bought three Australian wine brands –  Deakin Estate, La La Land and Azahara. The formal agreement is a brand-only sale and transfers ownership of these brands from the Wingara Wine Group, part of Henkell Freixenet, to the Calabria family.
Calabria Family Wines will now produce all of the wines across each of the brands’ portfolios from their Griffith, NSW winery as well as manage marketing across all markets. Calabria Family Wines will continue the current distribution partnership with Red & White for all three brands in Australia.
“Each of these brands brings something new to the table for the team at Calabria and we are eager to welcome them to the family as we diversify and broaden our wine offering,” third-generation general manager Michael Calabria said.
Read More: Deal activity slows
“Deakin Estate, with over 50 years of winemaking history behind it, has achieved outstanding distribution, particularly in challenging export markets where many haven’t. That can only happen with a good quality product and dedicated team behind it.
“Both La La Land and Azahara, while newer to market, are unique brands with well-established portfolios and market presence, both domestically and overseas. We look forward to relishing in La La Land’s dedication to emerging wine styles with our own Italian alternatives and celebrating Azahara’s effervescent flare and sophistication.”
Wingara Wine Group is part of Henkell Freixenet, a global market leader in sparkling wine, which was formed in January 2019 from the legacy Henkell & Co. Group and Grupo Freixenet.

Bosworth Wines celebrates 25 years of organic vineyards

Converting to organics in 1995 was a radical and pioneering move that changed viticulture in the Vale forever.

Organic wine sales in Australia have soared in recent years, making it hard to imagine that back in 1995 organic wine was rarely heard of. This year, 2020, marks 25 years since Bosworth Wines began converting their McLaren Vale vineyards to become certified organic, the first growers in the region to do so. That decision sparked a movement that now sees McLaren Vale boasting the highest number of certified organic vineyards of any wine region in Australia.

From those early days in the mid-1990’s Bosworth Wines now produce more than twenty wines from their certified organic, family-owned estates under two labels – Battle of Bosworth and the Spring Seed Wine Co. They also export to over 10 countries, including the USA, Korea, Russia, Sweden and Japan.

As there was no existing methodology for modern McLaren Vale vineyards wanting to convert to organic, viticulturist Joch Bosworth (who is also the co-founder and co-owner of Bosworth Wines together with his partner Louise Hemsley-Smith), had to largely invent his own. This included pioneering the use of the local yellow soursob under the vines for weed control, and the modification of a rotary hoe to cultivate only the soil under the vines in order to remove weeds.

Twenty-five years later, many of McLaren Vale’s organic growers use Joch’s cleverly adapted rotary hoe technique in their own vineyards. And the humble soursob has proudly become the Bosworth Wines logo.

Born and raised in McLaren Vale, Bosworth’s decision to convert to organic was made when he returned home after a stint working as a viticulturist in the USA and Victoria. “I realised that McLaren Vale’s Mediterranean climate was well suited to organic viticulture”, said Joch. “Personally, I’d never been too keen on using chemicals, so I took what I knew and made a start, devising the process as I went using some ideas and advice from a few old growers in the district.”

Bosworth’s vision and commitment to organic viticulture has underpinned the success of the Bosworth Wines business, capitalising on the rising consumer interest in organics over the last two decades. Some reports indicate demand for organic wine in Australia is growing at more than 50 per year as consumers become more conscious of their purchasing decisions and aware of issues like sustainability.

Organic wine – which is wine produced from grapes grown without the use of synthetic or artificial chemicals, pesticides, herbicides or fungicides – must also be subject to restricted levels of sulphur dioxide that can be added to the wine, as well as the chemical fining agents used.

Despite the surge in demand, the area is still considered a niche market, with organic wine making up only 1.3 per cent of all still wine consumption in Australia.

Mission toasts more awards success

Mission Estate winemakers are raising a glass to the continued success of their 2014 Jewelstone Chardonnay, after winning the trophy for ‘Champion Exhibition White or Sparkling Wine’ at the recent Air New Zealand Wine Awards over the weekend.

The Air New Zealand Wine awards is the premier wine competition in New Zealand recognising excellence in winemaking.  In 2015 over 1,500 wines were judged by a team of local and international judges to identify medal and trophy winners for each of the varietal categories. 

Mission Estate has a long association with chardonnay, indeed winemaker Paul Mooney crafted New Zealand’s first whole bunch pressed, barrel fermented chardonnay over 30 years ago. The winery has since established a reputation for consistently producing some of New Zealand’s finest examples of this regal white variety.

“We rely heavily on hand harvesting and whole bunch pressing for our barrel fermented chardonnays.  We believe these traditional French techniques produce wines that over-deliver in all the key sensory attributes,” Mooney said.

Mission Estate Sales and Marketing Manager Dean Smith, said:  “We are finding that many consumers are looking for wines that offer superior texture and personality.  This is where high quality chardonnay is hard to beat”. 

First Fairtrade Certified Goji Liqueur available for the summer

Noble Spirits has released the Goji Spritz: a summer cocktail that is low in sugar and will return partial profits to farmers and local development programs. This is made with FAIR Goji, a Fairtrade Certified Goji Liqueur.The Goji Spritz is set to be launched by FAIR Goji at Vino Paradiso over the weekend, as part of a repackaging campaign for a ‘Sustainable Summer’.

According to Australian based spirit and wine importer Noble Spirits, “Australian consumers are becoming much more discerning and concerned about what they drink. There is clearly an increasing demand for more authentic drinks that bring a positive impact to the people or to the community.”

“Everything in the Goji Spritz is made from organic high quality raw materials, gluten-free, Fair Trade certified. It is a high quality spritz that offers cranberry, cherry and plum that add a unique element to modern cocktails,” the importer said.

FAIR Goji has received positive feedback from consumers and mixologists, with expectations from the company to be the latest source of inspirations for healthy, fresh and unique cocktails.