Meet Duncan Lloyd of Coriole
Happy 50th Coriole! The very first Coriole wine was released by Hugh and Molly Lloyd in 1969. Half a century later, the Lloyd family continues to produce wines in McLaren Vale using the same vines. Such a fantastic milestone is a cause for reflection and celebration, so we caught up with third-generation winemaker, Duncan Lloyd to do just that.
It’s Coriole’s 50th birthday this year. How does it feel to be part of such a momentous occasion?
It’s a great privilege to be here and celebrating our history. Sharing our stories and wines has really highlighted the achievements Coriole has made over the last 50 years. It has also reinforced to me our philosophy and confidence for the future.
What is Coriole doing to celebrate this huge milestone?
We’re currently in the midst of some big trade tastings and consumer events which is an incredible experience to visit our past, as well as look to the future. It’s a great excuse to open some of our oldest vintages including our first wine, a 1970 Claret (Shiraz) that is still looking fantastic! And, it wouldn’t be Coriole without a big party on the lawns – it’s schedule for September and is going to be a fantastic celebration!
What are you most proud of doing at the McLaren Vale winery?
We’ve been putting a lot of effort into working with our different vineyard sites to get the most out of our wines. Some of the single vineyard Shiraz in barrel, that I’m currently looking at, are really exciting and I can’t wait to get them into bottle.
Why should people visit the McLaren Vale wine region?
Only 40 minutes from Adelaide’s CBD, McLaren Vale really has so much to offer and it’s such an accessible region. There’s a huge diversity of cellar doors (and breweries) to visit, which are almost exclusively family-owned. The dining options are exceptional, and you’re only ten minutes from incredible expansive beaches.
What are your most memorable career highlights?
Vintage in Chateauneuf-du-pape was a fantastic experience, complete with all the French clichés of baguettes, cheese and a glass of wine at 10am. Also, signing up for my first full-time winemaking role. I was pretty tempted to keep travelling, but the skills I learnt from that job have been invaluable.
What does a normal day in the life of a winemaker look like?
It’s very seasonal dependent. During the winter months there is time in the morning to go through emails and get the day’s cellar work going. Coffee at 10am. Most days there will be tastings, this could be 40 barrels of the same Shiraz, blending trials for bottling, or even benchmarking our own wines. Whenever possible, I like to get out in the vineyard with our viticulturalist to discuss plans for the upcoming season.
What advice would you give to those thinking about entering the wine industry?
Make sure that you’re fully dedicated and understand every aspect of the role you’re interested in. It’s not all tastings and long lunches – there’s a lot of cleaning and record keeping too. Be open to new ideas and always listen to the experience of those who have been in the industry, you never know what you might learn.
If you had to pick a favourite wine at Coriole, which would it be and why?
At the moment I’m excited about our Estate Shiraz. Celebrating 50 years, this wine represents our soils and philosophy. We have great vines to work with that are 50+ years old and it’s such a pleasure to see how this wine has evolved over the years.
The McLaren Vale Sangiovese Shiraz 2017 is our August wine of the month – what makes this such a standout?
This wine is so much fun to blend in the winery; two varieties that we are so passionate about in McLaren Vale coming together for something so unique. The gorgeous fragrance and savoury tannins of the Sangiovese are complimented beautifully by the richer, dark fruits of the Shiraz. And all from a stellar vintage!
We’ve paired it with flavoursome pork belly. What do you enjoy pairing it with?
Yum! The tannins will work beautifully with pork. Over the winter months I’ve matched this with a wonderfully rich cassoulet. Again, the savoury tannins work so well with the richness and the amazing aromatics keep it fresh.
Your wine is part of our fantastic Chef & the Cellar Calendar Collection. Why should wine lovers buy this pack?
The pack has such a fantastic diversity of styles from across the country. What a great way to stay busy and experience these wines at their optimum, paired with a home-cooked meal!
Do you prefer drinking or making wine?
Drinking…. no making…. no, probably drinking.
What’s your ultimate wine and food match?
Pan-fried squid with new season olive oil and Coriole Chenin Blanc – keeping it simple.
What is your favourite…
- Australian destination: Kangaroo Island – preferably without my phone.
- Weekend activity: Gardening and keeping the kids busy.
- Season: Summer! I live near the beach.
- Book: Any good crime thriller.
- Television show: The Office (UK).