What is the Dero?
The Dero Story how it started...
We moved to the Barossa in 2019.
Whilst working vintage at a local winery I was asked “Are you going to make some wine for yourself?” my response was – Hell yeah, if that’s ok? I didn’t know I was allowed to!
The next step was getting fruit… In 2019 grapes where near impossible to get, we searched high and low, with our limited contacts it appeared nothing was available…
A few days later on the forklift I received a call from a nice fella “I have a vineyard in Vine Vale and there is still a bit of fruit out there, come and have a look if you like”
In the end, there was indeed ‘Just a bit of fruit out there’ With the kids we picked a mere 87kg of old vine Shiraz and 320kg of Chardonnay to create our 2019 wines!
By the following year we had purchased our Flaxman Valley property. In between planting our new Truffiere,
we lined a shed with insulation, had cooling installed and thanks to the help of Gumtree & FB Market Place, we amassed a little “Winemaking Starter Kit” consisting of picking bins, stainless steel tanks, two small basket presses, barrel racks ect.
In preparation for the 2020 vintage we resorted to posting ads on Gumtree
“Barossa Shiraz Wanted”
Putting up “Grapes Wanted” signs in the local pub and supermarkets, cold calling or asking people in the street who I would strike up a conversation with.
The above methods yielded us five lovely little parcels of Shiraz that went on to create six Barriques of wine that was to be our first release of 2020 Dero.
Being in a new town and starting most relationships from scratch. The feeling really was at times of being a “Nobody” The Dero name and the packaging simply came about by a crazy thought of putting a wine in a brown paper bag (as the label) and calling it Dero. We found the thought of it comforting and amusing at the time!
Harvest time is a welcome and joyous occasion at our home. Every member of the family is enthusiastically involved from picking the fruit, all the way to the final packaging.
The 2022 season saw us working with some of our usual vineyards, allowing us a little familiarity and awareness of how best to treat them. Along with a welcome inclusion of some stunning century old vines from high up on Mengler Hill and a nice little dry grown patch up on Flaxman Valley Road in Eden Valley.
The following vineyards make an appearance to form our current release.
*Hoffmann DV Mickan Block Shiraz - Adrian Hoffmann.
*Wilton Hill Old Vine Shiraz Eden Valley - Joel Mattschoss.
*Marsen Springs Eden Valley Pinot Noir - Tony Walker.
*BVD Road Block Shiraz - Ebenezer.
*The Starship Block Shiraz - Flaxman Valley.
Dero is a wine that comes in a brown paper bag, but that is also the label, glued onto a squat, brown glass bottle. Appropriate, per se. The fruit was sourced from Gumtree ads, ‘wanted’ notes on notice boards and ‘asking people in the street who I would strike up a conversation with’. In the end, Dero came from a Hoffmann vineyard in Ebenezer, Steinert in High Eden, Nathan Burley’s spot in Flaxman Valley, the Kolovic Family vineyard in Lyndoch and Ted McWatters Williamstown site. Kudos. Sum of parts stuff, shades of Sami-Odi (and indeed reminiscent in the glass) with parcels that were picked between 11 and 15 Baume, but evening out to 13.8%.
Inky, dark fruited, rich and spicy red. Scents of ripe forest berries, pipe tobacco, charcuterie, forest floor, walnut and wood polish. Flavours are dark fruited too, very spicy, a bit of boot polish and resin to taste, but fits the bill nicely and comes away dense but medium weight and with a web of fine, chocolatey tannins with a trail of breathy fruit and pulverised rock minerally feel lingering. Fine and fresh, lifted, an old school feel but a vitality to the wine. An absolute ripper – nailed it.
Rated: 95 Points
Drink: 2021 – 2030