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Coonawarra’s wine community gathers to herald in the new vintage

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Coonawarra Vignerons, Naracoorte Community News

The Coonawarra Grape and Wine industry are set to herald in the 2024 Vintage (aka. V24), with the clinking of glasses and sound of bagpipes, as community members and dignitaries gather at the iconic Coonawarra Railway Siding for the official Vintage Launch Ceremony.

On Wednesday 6th March, wine industry stakeholders and supporters will ‘raise a glass’ to the upcoming Coonawarra grape harvest and bid farewell to the season past.

Featuring a traditional grape stomp and the christening of the new vintage with a bottle smash (similar to that of a ship setting sail on her maiden voyage), the Launch will bring the whole Coonawarra Community together. From the grape growers, cellar hands, vineyard workers and machine operators, to lab managers, winemakers and vignerons and everybody in between.

The ceremony is set to begin with the ringing of bagpipes with Coonawarra Vignerons Patron Doug Balnaves piping in the event in a nod to the region’s founding father, Scotsman, John Riddoch.

Coonawarra Vignerons Executive Officer, Hugh Koch, looks forward to celebrating this significant occasion, and emphasises the importance of Vintage, not only to the Coonawarra community, but for the entire district.

“Vintage in Coonawarra is more than when a wine’s grapes are harvested. It heralds the anniversary of a new year in Coonawarra, where we reflect and say goodbye to the previous season.”

“As a community it is the commencement of the economic driver that sustains our economy, creates our jobs, gives us our services, drives our visitation, and continues to put us on the map as one of the most pre-eminent wine regions of the world” said Koch.

Coonawarra Vignerons President, Dan Redman, welcomes the official start of vintage, and again anticipates great support from the local community.

“Last year we reintroduced the Vintage launch to the region. It celebrated the significance of the harvest bringing the whole community together, working in unison to ensure that grapes are picked for optimum quality and that winemaking teams can produce wines of a world class standing.”

“The Vintage Launch event will allow us to reflect on our past years, the people that have laboured and led the development of Coonawarra and acknowledge our Coonawarra Vignerons Patrons. It will also highlight the importance of Coonawarra’s contribution not only the local economy, but the national economy” said Redman.

During vintage, the region welcomes workers from across Australia and the globe, to assist and experience grape picking, pressing, crushing and production in some of the nation’s most well renowned wineries.

Community members are invited to attend the V24 Launch ceremony, which will take place at the Coonawarra Railway Siding, Giles Road, at 10am on Wednesday 6th March. The ceremony will be followed by a morning tea.

Guests are requested to register their attendance via Humanitix – https://events.humanitix.com/2024-coonawarra-vintage-launch.

The Naracoorte News 28 February 2024

This article appeared in the Naracoorte Community News.

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