Saturday, 2 September 2017

Behind the Brand - Delinquente Wine Co

The Riverland is barely seen as a region to produce premium wines, but Delinquente Wine Co's Con-Greg Grigoriou is keen to change that perception.

Having grown up in the region, Grigoriou knows nothing else. His family have always tended to Chardonnay and Shiraz vines but a focus on Mediterranean varieties was on the radar.

The Riverland sits two and a half to three hours north-east of Adelaide, the Murray River its lifeblood. Grape production is nothing new there - one quarter of Australian wine comes from these soils although much of it can be found in the bulk market.

We broke bread one evening - throwing back a few brews with some dumplings and steamed pork buns, Grigoriou's pride for the region couldn't be clearer. Having worked as a cellar hand for one of the big wineries, progressing to his own label was inevitable.

From a tiny half tonne in his first 2013 vintage, Delinquente Wine Co was born. Things have grown quickly in the space of a couple of years with 75 tonnes now coming through the door. The driving force behind the brand was his ability to see that Riverland wines could be marketed better and land at competitive price points. Better still, all fruit sourced is from vineyards which are certified organic and have been so for 7-8 years now.

"Most production in the region sees 12 tonnes to the acre, I wanted 6 tonnes. From the day these vines were planted, no chemical has ever touched these grapes." Con-Greg goes on to say that disease pressure is minimal too as it never rains.

Clever marketing has been the ultimate point of difference. From very early on he knew what the brand name would be, but how to present it was the big question that needed answering. His mate Jason, "is a whack job," he tells me, "but awfully creative too." Big screen prints of tattoos were drawn up and the rest is history. Eye catching with shelf appeal coupled with the pretty appearance of the wines, it's no surprise that they are being snapped up quickly.

"I'm happy where things are at for the moment. Sparkling, Rosé, two whites and two reds are all you need," he says with a satisfied look on his face.

Distribution is now Australian wide with export markets in the UK, Canada, Japan and USA.

Weeping Juan Pet Nat 2017
Tuff Nutt Bianco Pet Nat 2017
Screaming Betty Vermentino 2017
Pretty Boy Rosato 2017
Roxanne Razor NDM 2017

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