McGuigan and Peterson buy Lindemans Hunter Valley

Lindemans Hunter Valley (Photo: Wikimedia)

Hunter Valley winemaking identities Brian McGuigan and Colin Peterson have joined forces to buy the former Lindemans Ben Ean vineyard and winery in the lower Hunter.

Brian McGuigan tells me the winery will be refitted and operational in time for the 2018 vintage. He and Peterson will be able to use the Ben Ean name for the winery and cellar door, but not as a wine brand. Their new brand-name is undecided as yet. Brian and Fay McGuigan’s daughter Lisa McGuigan’s wines will also be made and sold there, as will the wines of Colin Peterson’s daughter, Savannah.

The new plans for the winery have been embraced wholeheartedly by the Hunter wine community, which is keenly aware of its distinguished history. At a gathering at the winery on September 27, 450 locals came and heard McGuigan and Peterson outline their plans for the site. Among the crowd were former Lindemans Ben Ean winemakers Karl Stockhausen (whose first vintage there was in 1955) and Patrick Auld. Dr Lindeman’s descendant Tim Capp, who still has the original Lindeman Hunter Valley property at Gresford, was also there expressing his support.

The historic vineyard gave its name to one of Australia’s most popular wines of the second half of the 20th century, Lindemans Ben Ean Moselle. The Ben Ean name was originally used on a dry Hunter semillon, but Ben Ean Moselle was a semi-sweet, low-priced, muscat-flavoured, non-regional white which was for many years one of our biggest selling wines. It disappeared from the shelves years ago.

Former owner, Treasury Wine Group, has not produced Hunter wine or used Hunter grapes for some years. The winery has not been operational for many years and the cellar door on McDonald’s Road, Pokolbin had also been closed for some time. It’s in an increasingly desirable location, next door to two new cellar doors, Gundog Estate Wines and Usher Tinkler Wines, not far from Brokenwood, Tamburlaine and Pooles Rock.

For Lindemans, it’s the final nail in a coffin, which has taken a long time to seal. Lindemans was established in the Hunter Valley in 1843, by Dr Henry Lindeman.

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