Barons of Barossa declare the 2015 vintage

Friday, February 20, 2015

On a sweltering 40 degree day, the wine fraternity Barons of Barossa carried on their tradition to Declare the 2015 Barossa Vintage. After Pastor David Gogoll presided over the blessing of the grapes in the historic Tabor Church, the Tanunda Town Band led the traditionally robed members of the wine fraternity to the Rotunda. The celebration continued with a ceremony that included the announcement of the Barossa winemaker and vigneron of the year.

Ben Radford was named 2015 Barossa Winemaker of the Year. Ben was born and bred in the Barossa and has had considerable winemaking experiences in Europe and South Africa. Now Winemaker and Managing Director at Rockford Wines, Ben is celebrating his tenth vintage with this iconic Barossa winery. He said, "œI have had two great mentors in Jim Irvine and Robert O'Callaghan and hope that, in the future, I too can be a mentor to the next generation of the Barossa."

The 2015 Barossa Vigneron of the Year is John Kalleske. A 6th generation Barossan, John has never used any chemicals in his vineyard and has been a constant advocate for biodynamic farming throughout his career.

L to R services to the Industry Award winner James Nitschke, Vigneron of the Year John Kalleske, Winemaker of the Year Ben Radford.

2015 Vintage Forecast

In her forecast of the 2015 vintage, Louisa Rose said, "œHarvest has started in many varieties on the Barossa floor, and also in the Eden Valley, and it is coming in quickly! Whites are showing delicate flavours and lovely natural acidity, and reds strong colours and rich flavours.

"œThe forecast for the next week looks perfect for ripening, and if this continues vintage will keep going at a lively pace, grape growers and winemakers will be sleep deprived, but the result will be that 2015 is remembered as a great Barossa Valley and Eden Valley vintage."

The late Herman Thumm was honoured with a plaque to be placed on the Barons Wine Walk of Fame, honouring a late Baron who has made a major contribution to the Barossa. Representing the family, his son Dieter said, "œHT survived many hardships overseas before coming to Australia. During the war, he was confined in an internment camp in the Riverland but he was unstoppable; he even made sparkling wine in the space under the floorboards of his barracks!"

James March, CEO of the BGWA, announced Jamie Nietschke as the recipient of the "œServices to Industry" Award.

L to R Colin Glaetzer and Dieter Thumm, son of past Baron Hermann Thumm, unveil the plaque.