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Rymill Coonawarra

Certificates of Excellence

We are thrilled to have recently received not one, but two Certificates of Excellence.

Firstly, from the team at TripAdvisor who presented us with their 2018 Certificate of Excellence based on the consistently great reviews Rymill Coonawarra has received on their website - arguable the world's largest and most influencial travel site. A massive thank you to everyone that has visited our Cellar Door and posted a review on TripAdvisor. We really appreciate it.

Secondly, from 3 highly respected wine critics, Huon Hooke, Rob Campbell and Toni Paterson MW, who all write for the Real Review. The Real Review 2018 Certificate of Excellence is only awarded to a select group of wineries that consistently produce excellent wine. As The Real Review team say, they are aiming to "...bring the focus back to where it should be: quality and consistency." As well as a Certificate of Excellence, Rymill Coonawarra was also awarded a place on their Top Wineries list.

News on the 2018 Vintage

The 2018 vintage is looking quite strong at this stage, with a good mixture of early heat and cooler days throughout the summer.  Sparkling base, gewürztraminer and sauvignon blanc are all picked, with all white varieties showing fantastic aromatics and balance.  The reds are in great shape with good acidity and strong colour retention, and low to medium crop levels are providing excellent concentration.  Forecast for the continuation of vintage looks great and all vineyards are progressing well. Shiraz started slightly earlier, but with a cool forecast, we will be picking well into mid-April to complete the cabernet sauvignon harvest. Indications are that this will be one of the better vintages the region has recently seen, looking close in style to the impressive 2015 vintage.

A new vintage also means new staff. To help out our permanent staff at such a busy time we get the opportunity to employ people from all walks of life. This year sees us getting to know some fabulous personalities. Some who want a change in career, some who are travelling around the world and some great young locals who are having their gap year.  We love it and we thank them wholeheartedly for their time and hard work!


Kelly  has joined us from Melbourne.

She is currently studying wine science at CSU.
After 15 years working in administration and with her 2 children now having finished school, it was time for Kelly to follow her dream of working within the wine industry. She is enjoying her first vintage with Rymill Coonawarra and is a wonderfully cheerful and happy person to have around the winery!


Joan  (known as Joe) comes all the way from Sofia in Bulgaria. His interest in winemaking and desire to explore the world brought him to Australia and more precisely Coonawarra. Working at Rymill has been a great experience so far he says. After vintage he would like to explore more of Australia. His long term goal is to find a university program associated with wine. He believes that Australia will give him the experience needed to further his interest.


Laura  comes to us fresh out of college to learn about Vintage and to earn some money in her gap year. She has already put her hand to many tasks in the winery, from helping out in the cellar door to now working as an assistant in the lab and rolling up her sleeves to help out in the cellar! After vintage has finished Laura is keeping her options open, with some definite plans to travel later in 2018. Next year she will be heading to Warrnambool to commence her studies in midwifery and nursing.



We always look forward to Easter at Rymill Coonawarra, particularly as the period's traditional chocolate treats give us a little extra energy to get through vintage!

One of our favourite chocolate creations is from Tom Tilbury (Gather Food & Wine, Robe) which we have nicknamed the "Deconstructed Easter Egg". Its layers of dark chocolate, white chocolate and caramel offer loads of different wine matching potentials.

Chocolate and wine can go well together - possibly because the process of making chocolate is actually very similar to wine, with both cocoa beans and wine fermented with the same type of yeast. However, despite this affinity with one another, some wine and chocolate pairings do fight for the same 'palate space', so here are a few tips to finding the best wine to have with your chocolate...

1) Aim for a wine that has as much fruit sweetness as the sweetness of the chocolate you are eating. For example, higher sugar levels in milk chocolate will cancel out any fruitiness in dry wines, leaving them tasting bitter.

2) Pair chocolate and wine according to the darkness of the chocolate. As with food, the general rule is that the darker the chocolate, the darker the wine, e.g. reds are better with dark chocolate.

3) Look for wines with soft, rounded tannins to pair with chocolate. The smoothness of the wine is an important element when pairing with the smoothness of chocolate.

4) Experiment a lot. These are just guidelines; make up your own mind as to what matches well, and have fun discovering what you like!

White chocolate recommendations: tropical fruit, botrytised dessert wines like the Rymill Coonawarra June Traminer. Also ice wines, muscats, moscato d'Asti or even a fruity chardonnay (these wines can pick up on the buttery, fatty tones of what isn't always considered to be a "real" chocolate).

Milk chocolate recommendations: Rutherglen muscats, creamy sherries and vintage ports. Or experiment with a soft merlot or pinot noir, just be careful of the higher sugar levels in some cheap milk chocolate.

Dark chocolate (50% to 70%) recommendations: as above port works well here as does a vin santo. Or you can try a smooth cabernet like our The Yearling Cabernet Sauvignon.

Bittersweet chocolate (70% to 100%) recommendations: this is where more intense spicy, peppery red wines can find a home. Rymill Coonawarra is about to release a stunning new The Dark Horse Shiraz which we can't wait to try with our favourite dark treats!





95 points from James Halliday!

June 2016

Coonawarra isn’t all about Cabernet…we make amazing cool climate Shiraz too. Check out what James Halliday has to say about our 2013 Classic Shiraz. We’re pretty chuffed with this fantastic review!

This is a very good Coonawarra shiraz, speaking volumes about its variety and place, and little about its vinification, the last very sensible. The colour is bright crimson-purple through to the rim, the bouquet and palate bringing spice, pepper and French oak to the party; it is medium-bodied, its black cherry and blackberry fruits with fine-grained tannins and a reprise of the oak.



Rating: 95
Drink By: 2033
Price: $32.00

Rymill features in 3 articles in Wine Companion Magazine

May 2016

Very exciting to see all the Coonawarra love in the June/July edition of the James Halliday Wine Companion magazine!

We're in all 3 articles including a nice little mention of our gewürztraminer (gt) listed under “Great Whites”, a shout out to our winemaker Federico, and a piece on our 2013 Classic Cabernet.

Grab a copy today or you can read the full articles here:

The terra rossa trail

Insider's guide to Coonawarra

Collectible Cabernet

95 points from Ray Jordan!

May 2016

Ray Jordan has always been a fan of our wines and here is another incredible review and a nice high score for our 2013 Classic Cabernet.

The past few Australian vintages have produced stellar cabernets from regions across the country. And while some of the prices are creeping up, you can still get marvellous cabernets for about $30.

WA’s great cabernet regions, the Great Southern and Margaret River, continue to produce wines of exceptional quality and across the country in Coonawarra, winemakers have also raised the bar, taking advantage of excellent vintages.

Rymill Coonawarra cabernet sauvignon 2013 ($32)
This is just about the best cabernet I have tasted from Rymill in Coonawarra — and I’ve tasted some mighty good ones. Captures the vintage and region perfectly. Lifted blackcurrant fruit with just the faintest leafy lift on the nose. The palate is so rich and dense yet with a fresh vitality and life. Excellent tannin influence.
95/100 (Best drinking: Now to 2030. Alc: 14.5%)

You can buy this amazing Cabernet online here

Some nice reviews have been flowing for The Dark Horse

May 2016

Campbell Mattinson
I like this. It has a strength, as cabernet should. It’s ferrous and leafy but the core is dark and brooding. Bitumen and blackcurrant. There’s tannin here, chewy and dry, but juicy fruit keeps things flowing. A good buying/drinking option.

Rated : 90 Points
Alcohol : 14%
Price : $23
Drink : 2016 - 2022

David Ellis
Rymill Coonawarra’s unusually-named The Dark Horse range takes its moniker from one of Judy Rymill’s favourite nags, Adlai, whose lively and colourful history included bucking a senior Victorian Police Commander off at a public parade, resulting in him being condemned to death and a horrible end in a knackery. It was only Judy’s intervention that saved Adlai – who, with her care and  understanding, actually went on to be chosen in Australia’s equestrian team at the 1960 Rome Olympics.

A Rymill 2014 The Dark Horse Cabernet Sauvignon that’s just recently been released honours Adlai in appropriate form: it’s a young, lively and memorable drop, offering buyers a wine that’s all about juicy, dark and full-on blackcurrant, mulberry and dark cherry flavours, suggestions of chocolate and a hint of mint. Maker, Sandrine Gimon likes to think of it as a “modern twist on Cabernet Sauvignon”, and at $25 it’s certainly value-buying and rewarding drinking now – we’d suggest with roast duck and cherry sauce – or for popping away in the cellar for around another five years of age and flavour development.

Who Weekly, Food by Michelle Reedy
It's (nearly) all about cab sauv in South Australia's Coonawarra. Rymill has other strings to its bow, but half its plantings are this variety. From their lauded Surveyor 2013 ($90) through to this well-priced option, the label is going great guns. $23

New Rymill experiences on Limestone Coast
By Kate Foreman

April 2016

A great article about our "Rymill Experiences" has been published on Brand South Australia's Inside South Australia.

Rymill Coonawara is ‘bottling’ a new mix to further tempt us to experience the Limestone Coast. The long established winery has teamed up with local tourism and business operators to present ‘Rymill Experiences’.

Read the full article here

Top Drops of the Month by Max Allen
Gourmet Traveller, April 2016

The Surveyor makes it all the way to Antartica!

March 2016

How very cool, The Surveyor is back in Antarctica! Dr Rachel Hawker, grand daughter of John Rymill's cousin Frankie, is at Casey Station as base doctor this year. Look at this awesome shot she shared with us on Instagram!

The Surveyor surveying the penguins. This Rymill cab sauv is one of my favourites!  #wine #Antarctica #penguin #coonawarra #cabernet

This is very fitting, considering The Surveyor is named to honour John Rymill’s grandfather, John Riddoch Rymill, grandson of John Riddoch, who founded Coonawarra in 1890. He was a polar explorer and surveyor, decorated for his work on both the Arctic and Antarctic continents, and led the 1934–1937 British Graham Land Expedition to discover and map the Antarctic Peninsula. 

The Surveyor Cabernet Sauvignon is available online (but be quick! Stocks are getting low and we only make this wine in exceptional years!)

2015 gt features in Wine Selectors "Top 50 Wines of 2015"

January 2016

How exciting to see that our gt made it, not only to the top 50 wines of 2015, but right up there at number 10! The deliciously aromatic and textured Gewürztraminer is one of three Coonawarra wines listed and is the only Gewürztraminer to make the cut! The gt has always been a favourite amongst the team at Rymill and in the Coonawarra community so it's great to see recognition from our peers on the tasting panel at Wine Selectors.

Buy online or visit our cellar door, open every day 10am-5pm.

You can read the full article here

2013 Classic Cabernet gets 94 points from
James Halliday's Wine Companion

January 2016

A great review has just been published on the Wine Companion website for our 2013 Classic Cabernet Sauvignon. In fact, we have had various great reviews in the last few months so thought we should share them with you!

James Halliday Wine Companion
94 points

Clean and pure. A flood of blackcurrant and mint with subtle tobacco notes drifting over the top. Classic flavour profile and with the structure to match, though it remains fluid, even seductive. Will mature gracefully and well.

Huon Hooke
92 points

Deep red/purple: excellent colour. Cedar, cigarbox and toasty-barrel aromas together with attractively ripe dark berry fruit. The palate is likewise intense and bright, fresh and youthfully bold, with rather gritty tannins and no shortage of acid. It's quite sappy and grippy in texture. It needs time and should turn out to be a very good cabernet. Good length and intensity. A top vintage for this wine.

Mike Bennie
91+ points
Smells regal, if there’s such a thing. Lavender oil, fine mahogany, smoke, ripe black berries, fig and date dried fruit, bayleaf. Complex perfume. Courses across the palate with firm tannin, black fruit, squeaky acidity – a chewy wine that spreads across the palate with assertiveness. One for cellaring, but should drink well as it unfurls.

Wine Genius
91 points

Deeply coloured. A generous rounded and ripe expression of Coonawarra - mulberry, blackberry and regional mint with some slightly dusty oak. Dry, full bodied and rounded in quite a savoury style with a touch of developed cedar and earth. Some chewy tannins will allow the wine to hold in bottle for 8-10 years.

NEW RELEASE - 2013 Sandstone Cabernet Sauvignon

October 2015

New to the Rymill Coonawarra stable is the 2013 Sandstone Single Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon. This is an incredibly unique Coonawarra Cabernet and offers something really different. It is produced from grapes grown on Rymill’s vineyard in the south of the region. This vineyard is the only area where a one million year old sandstone ridge, which normally lies beneath the limestone and terra rossa soil of Coonawarra, emerges from the depths to be exposed. It gives the Cabernet grapes a delicious, refined fruit and mint combination with exceptional length.

Senior Winemaker Sandrine Gimon says, “This wine is distinctively different and makes you fall in love with Cabernet all over again!”

The Sandstone is available exclusively through our wine club and cellar door. If you'd like to find out more send us an email.

We have already received some great reviews and we’re pretty sure there are more to come…!

Mike Bennie
94 points

High tone clove and fennel scents. Curious. Shows dark fruit perfumes, hit of green herbs and lime leaf, mellowness of rum n raisin and cedary spiciness. Savoury is the gist. Feels washy, but honed with lacy tannins. Saturates palate but doesn’t bash it around, staying juicy, gently sweet, tinged with saline acidity. Finishes long and with gentle pucker. Elegance yet flow. Unique, per se. This is very good.

Huon Hooke
93 points
Deep, bright red/purple colour and a fresh, intense, bright bouquet of raspberry and crushed vine leaf. It smells more minty with airing, and the peppermint also permeates the palate. Its tannins are firm and tight, the mouthfeel quite lively and edgy, with acidity and firm tannin augmenting the mintiness. It warrants some cellaring. 

Wine Genius
93 points

Deep ruby colour. A powerful, fleshy and ripe Coonawarra style with lush black currant pastille fruit plus a typical minty regional edge and toasty new oak. Dry, full, rich and bold with layers of ripe fruit backed by significant oak tannins for structure making for an age worthy style. 

Reviews for the recently released
2013 The Surveyor Cabernet Sauvignon

September 2015

Available to buy online or visit our cellar door, open every day 10am-5pm.

Huon Hooke
95 points
Deep red/purple hue and a rich, powerful bouquet showing a complexity of violets, dark berries, some alcohol fuminess and background crushed leaf and mint touches. It's full-bodied, fresh and upright, with firm tannins in abundance and a long and quite concentrated palate. Oak is there, but it's background: it's certainly not an oaky style of Coonawarra reserve cab. A big wine for Rymill, and loaded  with tannin. Long-term cellaring is indicated.

Mike Bennie
93+ points
True to the word perfume, an evocative, enduring mesh of scents of complex dark fruits, toast, game meats, black olive, lavender floral notes, warm mahogany. It’s powerful, but seductive in its way. Come on in, the water is dark and fine. Firm chewy tannins dominate the palate, but they feel well placed, giving life and structure to the wine, dragging the sinewy dark fruit flavours long. Pucker and chew, chew and pucker. It’s a wine that serves ‘reserve’ labelings well.

Wine Genius
93 points

Opaque ruby hue. A powerful, ripe and oaky style showing blackberry, chocolate, cedar, pine needle fruits backed by robust spicy oak. A very dry and full palate follows with loads of chewy oak tannins that currently dominate the the fruit showing a wine that needs time to flower.