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Aussie Evolution

Shifting wine style keeps Wolf Blass current

Wolf Blass winemaker Chris Hatcher is keenly aware of the challenge of keeping abreast of where consumer tastes are heading while remaining true to the winery’s house style.

“As chief winemaker of a brand like Wolf Blass, there’s a big responsibility to evolve the styles,” explained Hatcher, who has held the top cellar job since 1996. “In my opinion, we need to keep it relevant to the here and now.

“Over my period in the company, there has been a huge change from wines that were quite developed as younger wines and quite oaky, but had really good texture and palate structure.

“We’ve moved that to a more contemporary style that’s got less obvious oak and more expression of fruit, but still that good mid-palate textural element and balanced tannins.

“You’ve got two things going on. There’s the responsibility to the style of the brand that people know, but also to evolve it into the new world.”

Own Words
Cool character: Hatcher on a new benchmark for Aussie wine

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