The d'Arenberg story began in 1912 when Joseph Osborn purchased the well established Milton Vineyards of 25 hectares in McLaren Vale. Joseph's son Frank soon increased the size of the vineyard to 78 hectares. Fruit was sold to local wineries until the construction of his own cellars was completed in 1928.
In 1943 Frank's son Francis d'Arenberg Osborn, universally known as "d'Arry", helped his ill father run the business, eventually assuming full management in 1957. In 1959 d'Arry decided to launch his own label d'Arenberg, named in honour of his mother, Frances Helena d'Arenberg.
By the 1970's d'Arenberg wines had become very fashionable, having gained a significant national and international profile in less than 20 years. d'Arry's son Chester took over the reins as Chief Winemaker in 1984.
He immediately set about returning the vineyards to their traditional grape growing practices of minimal inputs and no fertilisation, cultivation and irrigation wherever possible, therefore achieving natural soil flavours with very low yields, capturing the unique small-batch character of the wines and the true flavour of the McLaren Vale region.
All grapes, red and white, are basket-pressed. The reds are still traditionally fermented with the grape skins submerged in open wax-lined concrete fermenters utilising the age-old technique.
D’Arry Osborn was named 2016 South Australian Legend of the Vine. Read Anthony Madigan's article from Wine Business Magazine when he recently met D'Arry.
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