De Bortoli family story is one of determination and triumph that started 92 years ago when they arrived from Northern Italy to Australia. It is now a fourth generation, family-owned and operated wine company complete with three wineries, six vineyards (Yarra Valley, Heathcote, Rutherglen, King Valley, Hunter Valley, Riverina), and exports to over 60 countries.
SupermarketNews spoke to Darren Blood from De Bortoli Wines, along with the NZ brand manager Sam Baker to find out more about this iconic winery.
What characteristics of your wine are influenced by the physical landscape of your winery?
“The ancient red Cambrian soils of Northern Heathcote are ideal for dark fruited, rich, soft Cabernet.”
What is one of the most rewarding things about winemaking?
“Understanding the seasons, learning about the different aspects of winemaking, experimenting with varieties and clones, all with the goal of making wine with a sense of place.”
“Intense dark colour red with purple edge. Ripe blackberry and blueberry characters, cedar-wood and liquorice. Soft, rich, mouth coating, balanced tannin, hints of classic Cabernet, authentically Heathcote.”
What was important in making this award-winning wine?
“Producing a great wine that is textural, structured, charming, tastes of place, has poise and elegance, and a bottle of wine that is empty before you know it…”
“Authentically Heathcote and perfectly crafted to accompany a chargrilled ribeye and or Woodfired pizza. Bold, brooding and delicious.”
How long can you shelf your winning bottle of wine for?
“Lovely drinking now. Will age well and be even more complex and delicious over the next 3-8 years.”
Who would your wine appeal to?
“Consumer who loves a soft rich fruit forward wine that represents great value.”
How would you describe this wine to someone who's never had this grape varietal/blend before?
“Intense dark coloured red wine. Ripe blackberry and blueberry flavours. Soft, rich, delicious, balanced wine of amazing value.”
If you could do a wine bottle swap with any winery in NZ or the world, which winery and wine would it be with?
“Very hard to put finger on one, depends on what, where, who and Why I am doing really. However, I am a sucker for Champagne and could never steer away from a chilled bottle of Pol Roger no matter what time.”
Founders: Vittorio & Giuseppina De Bortoli
Current Owner: De Bortoli Family - Run by three generations - Darren De Bortoli, Victor De Bortoli, Leanne De Bortoli, Kevin De Bortoli
Winemaker: Steve Webber
Location: Dixon's Creek, Yarra Valley
Wine varietals produced: Too many to mention from dry to sweet, light to heavy, various styles from sparkling, still, fortified, botrytised.