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New Barossa winery backed by Argentina

Wine

One of the world’s leading wine consultants has teamed up with an Argentinian oil and gas billionaire in a multi-million-dollar vineyard and winery development in the Barossa Valley wine region.

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Alberto Antonini, who was named last year by Decanter magazine as one of the world’s top five wine consultants, is advising Alejandro Pedro Bulgheroni on the development of Greenock Farm, a 40ha property at the northern end of the Barossa Valley.

The 72-year-old Bulgheroni bought Greenock Farm in October last year for $A1.95 million.

With only 12ha currently planted to Barossa iconic grape varieties – Shiraz, Grenache, Mataro and Semillon – there are imminent plans to plant a further 18ha with the same varieties, while restoration work has already begun on the 150-year-old stone barns and farm buildings on the site.

A budget has not been revealed for the new development but Nolan says it will include a 180-tonne winery, a cellar door and possibly some high-end accommodation.

The first vintage, under a label name that is still going through the international trademarking process, is expected in 2018.

Alberto-Antonini-resized

Wine consultant Alberto Antonini. Photo: supplied

While it is considerably smaller than the Bulgheroni Family Vineyards’ recent $US85 million vineyard and winery development Bodega Garzón in Uruguay, the company’s Australian managing director Amelia Nolan promises that, like Bodega Garzón, it will be a cutting-edge development that will push boundaries in all directions.

Bodega Garzón will feature a luxury hotel and a $180,000-entry-fee wine club where members can create their own wines.

Bulgheroni, who spent three years exploring Australian wine regions with Antonini and Nolan before settling on the Barossa, has now added Australia to a portfolio that includes multiple estates in California, Argentina, Uruguay, France and Italy.

He is the first South American billionaire to build such a far-flung international wine business and he’s done it in a remarkably short period of time, snapping up most of his estates since 2011 at the rate of two a year.

“We like the Barossa a lot,” said Antonini, who announced plans for the development at a launch and tasting event held at Orana restaurant on Friday. “We had many options, but this was a place of inspiration.

“The Barossa has great terroir and has built a great reputation, but what I taste now is not what we think the Barossa is capable of delivering. We will focus on the origin of the grapes, the unique place, not the variety. Varieties are generic, but places like the Barossa are unique.”

Nolan says Bulgheroni and Antonini felt that the Barossa provided “a unique and special place to make wine”.

“We looked at all of Australia,” she says. “We wanted a unique vineyard site that was not only a good fit for our portfolio, but also provided an opportunity to do something new on old bones.”

This article was first published on The Lead.

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