27th October 2021
Two trophies for SA’s Wrattonbully at Limestone Coast Wine Show
A boutique Wrattonbully producer has taken on the industry big guns, collecting two major trophies at the Limestone Coast Wine Show. The family-owned Eight at the Gate Wines’ 2019 Family Selection Chardonnay won the Pam Dunsford Trophy for Best Chardonnay and the Colin Kidd Trophy for Best White Wine of Show at last week’s 20th anniversary event – and finished runner-up for ‘Best Wine of Show’.
Judging panel chair, Corey Ryan, described it as an “outstanding“ example of modern-style Australian Chardonnay in a solid class of wines. “It was tight and steely, with lovely intensity of flavour,” he said.
Eight at the Gate has a great backstory; co-owners Claire Davies (viticulturist) and Jane Richards (sales and marketing) are sisters with eight children between them – all of whom spent their early years perched up on a gate watching intently while the adults were hard at work. After supplying premium grapes for iconic wine labels for many years, the family began bottling their own wines six years ago. The trophy-winning wine is one of two Chardonnays produced, along with Cabernet Shiraz and Sparkling Shiraz NV.
“It’s absolutely thrilling to have a little company like ours pull off a trophy like this with the competition in this region and so many amazing producers; it validates what we do,” Jane Richards says. “We have this particular block where this Chardonnay comes from – it’s called Block 12 for us – and it’s just consistently got some amazing characters. This one is all made in traditional French oak barrels, and it’s a very sophisticated, elegant Chardonnay.”
Wrattonbully Wine Region Association chair, Tim Fletcher, says it’s wonderful to see a white wine from Wrattonbully steal the show. “Wrattonbully has had a lot of wine show success for its red varieties, winning multiple trophies for Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz, with Riesling from the region also winning the ‘Best White’ trophy in 2011,” he says. “Eight at the Gate’s trophies for Chardonnay affirm the consistent quality across all varieties produced in this region.”
Adding to the celebrations, Eight at The Gate’s Wrattonbully Vineyard, ‘Lanacoona Estate’, also supplied the vast majority of grapes that went into the gold medal-winning Jack Estate 2018 Shiraz.
In other Wrattonbully accolades at the 2021 Limestone Coast Wine Show, Malone Wines’ 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon scored gold, while the 2016 and 2017 vintages were awarded silver. The 2016 Malone Wines Shiraz also won a silver medal. Seasoned performer Pepper Tree Wines won gold for their Pump Shed Single Vineyard Chardonnay 2020, and silver for the Block 21A Single Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 2016. Smith & Hooper’s 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot also bagged gold, and silver medals went to Barristers Block Bully Shiraz 2019 and Mérite Wines 2019 Shiraz Malbec.
Please click here for digital images + bottle shot.
Please click here to view a short video clip on Eight at the Gate Wines’ 2019 Family Selection Chardonnay featuring interviews with co-owners Claire Davies and Jane Richards + Limestone Coast Wine Show judge Corey Ryan.
Additional information or interviews: Tim Fletcher, chair of the WWRA – 0407 188 075, Jane Richards, Eight at the Gate Wines – 0400 843 126.
“Wrattonbully lies between Padthaway and Coonawarra in the terra rossa-rich rolling hill country of South Australia’s Naracoorte Ranges.”