Sue Hodder with John Riddoch bottles. Image courtesy TWE
2022 brings several celebrations to Wynns Coonawarra Estate. Winemaker Sue Hodder is celebrating her 30th year at the winery alongside marking 40 years since Wynns’ flagship Cabernet was first made.
Hodder completed her 30th vintage at Wynns in May this year.
“After 30 years, I still have great joy in walking out the back door to our historic triple-gabled winery,” she said.
“While this beautiful building remains largely untouched, we do now use smaller tanks, oak fermenters, different oak barrels, and an optical berry sorter.
“These winemaking tools just enable us to be more confidently creative. Our winemaking team has had remarkably few changes over the years – we are a family at Wynns, and our house style remains clear.”
From one red dirt to another, Hodder grew up in Alice Springs and began her wine career as a viticulturist before moving into winemaking.
She joined Wynns in 1993 as a winemaker under the guidance of Peter Douglas before being appointed senior winemaker in 1998. A champion of Australian Cabernet, Hodder was named a Fellow of the Australian Society of Viticulture and Oenology (ASVO) in 2021 for her outstanding and meritorious contribution to Australian wine.
2022 also marks 40 years of Wynns John Riddoch Cabernet Sauvignon. Since Hodder first began at Wynns, John Riddoch Cabernet Sauvignon has been the pinnacle of her team’s work.
“First made 40 years ago in 1982, Wynns John Riddoch Cabernet is the ultimate selection made from less than one per cent of all our Cabernet fruit. It is a single variety and generally a selection of two or three beautiful old vineyards from the heart of the terra rossa soil,” said Hodder.
“The 2019 John Riddoch is certainly amongst the best wines we have made at Wynns Coonawarra Estate. It is fine and medium bodied from an optimal growing season.”
In 2020 Wynns made history when the 2016 John Riddoch became one of the first Australian wines to launch on the exclusive La Place de Bordeaux network.