The Next Crop

pictured L-R: Ben Dahlenburg (Eldorado Road), Adrian Santolin (Santolin Wines/Boy Meets Girl) and Shaun Crinion (Dappled Wines)

A recent survey of Yarra Valley winemakers has found one in five has at some time in their careers worked under Rob Dolan. Ok, so I may have invented that stat but it can’t be that far from the truth. The current crop of winemaking talent at Rob Dolan Wines has hit the ground running. Three of our young winemakers have launched their own brands and are making stunning wines. May we introduce you to:

Adrian SantolinSantolin Wines/Boy Meets Girl. Adrian recently won Best New World Chardonnay at the Hong Kong International Wine & Spirit Competition 2014 and Wine of Show at the Riverina Wine Show 2014 for his 2013 Yarra Valley Chardonnay. He also has one of the hottest brands in the Naked Wines portfolio.

Shaun CrinionDappled Wines. This new label has sommeliers’ tongues wagging. You’ll find it at Cumulus, Attica and Supernormal in Melbourne, Otto and Quay in Sydney and Mona in Tassie.

Ben Dahlenburg: Eldorado Road. Ben and his Dad have been delivering dense, brooding reds from the family vineyard just outside Wangaratta for a few years now. He’s dabbling with Nero D’Avola, Durif and of course old vine Shiraz.

All of this youth and vigour creates a truly inspiring workplace that encourages creativity. The enthusiasm and desire to try daring new things is harnessed by Rob within his own label as he lets us loose on various White Label batches where we aim to maximise texture, weight and mouth feel. The best example of this is the upcoming 2014 Bon Blanc (Savagnin) which saw us experiment with whole berry, MLF, extra lees and wild yeast to create a unique and wonderfully textural wine. We can’t wait to get it in bottle.

As a great man once said “as long as you’re learning, you’re not old”. Hearing that makes me feel a lot better.

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