Peter Lehmann Layers Adelaide White, Australia
We brought this wine in for a recent Australian tasting we hosted and had some left over. Peter Lehmann started his own winery in 1979, partly as a means of helping with the glut of grapes then afflicting the Barossa. “I’ll take your grapes and turn them into wine,” he told the desperate growers, many of them conservative farmers of Silesian descent who regarded their old vines as part of their patrimony. “But I’ll only be able to pay you when I sell the wine.” They gratefully accepted. Without this deal, it is widely thought that the Barossa would have lost a large swathe of its old vines. The crisis passed, in large part thanks to Peter’s energy and vision, and the Lehmann winery became one of the Barossa’s – and Australia’s – outstanding wineries. It was for his role as saviour of the Barossa and as the creator of this winery, that Peter was named ‘Personality of the Year’ by the International Wine Challenge in 2009. Since its first vintage, the Peter Lehmann winery has championed Shiraz and Semillon, the two great traditional varieties of the Barossa. The Layers wines blend these two varieties with more innovative ones and express the new face of the Barossa. The unoaked white is a blend of Semillon, which adds structure and zest, and Muscat, lending a delicate floral character, both complemented by the delicate spice of Gewürztraminer and given texture by Pinot Gris.