La Petite Mort Wines
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La Petite Mort Winery (LPM) is a project of Bent Road Wines which was originally founded by Glen Robert and Robert Richter. Glen is an ex medical researcher who studied winemaking at Charles Sturt University. These days Glen is the head winemaker at LPM and Robert is the Viticulturist. Glen was joined by Andrew Scott as another winemaker, Andrew also studied at Charles Sturt. LPM doesn’t have the usual cellar door instead tastings are by appointment and conducted in a church style building adjacent to the winery.

Glen (left) and Andrew. On the right: A tasting in the church building

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The vines at LPM are managed as naturally as possible and a similar approach drives the winemaking.
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Ballandean at an elevation of 800+M was chosen as the location for the vineyard. The LPM project is to make wines differently and here they have been immensely successful. Some LPM wines are made classically but most aren’t. A real point of difference is the use of Qvevri – large clay vessels for fermentation of wines with extended time on skins. This is a method that was developed in Georgia which has a wine making history in excess of 6000 years. White wines made with the use of Qvevri and extended skin contact are typically orange in colour have stronger tannin profiles and somewhat different flavour profiles than classically made wines due to the extended maceration on skins. Resultant orange hues of a muscat/gewürztraminer blend made using Qvevri with extended skin contact are shown in the picture. The LPM project also makes red wines with the use of Qvevri and extended skin contact. There is no colour difference for the reds instead this is a way of managing flavour and aroma profile together with tannin structure. Two Qvevri vessels are shown in the picture however this is not the usual location for Qvevri which are traditionally buried in the ground as the large clay vessels can be unstable under their own weight. Additionally the contents of the Qvevri are cooler due to the vessels location in the earth.

Large Qvevri Vessels Buried in the Ground at LPM
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If you have a keen interest in wine but never tasted wine made in Qvevri then LPM is a place to put on your list or to order wine from. The whites are certainly different to wines made using other processes, they definitely look different and you will encounter a tannin structure you have likely never before experienced in white wine. The reds are less obviously different but of course as they rely on extended maceration on skins for a greater source of colour and flavour but also as a source of tannin you will detect nuanced outcomes of this rarely used wine making process. A visit to LPM is an immensely enjoyable educational and wine tasting experience. Glen Robert, a very attentive host, will guide you through the wine range and a tour of the winery.

The Wines

Red Wines:

• LPM Tempranillo Reserva | • LPM Qvevri Saperavi | • LPM The Rosso – a Nebbiolo/Barbera blend | • LPM DM Qvevri – a Durif/Mataro blend | • LPM Shiraz/Viognier | • LPM Rosé – Pinot Noir/Sangiovese

White Wines:

• LPM Chardonnay | • LPM Gentil Qvevri – a Muscat/Gewürztraminer blend | • LPM Marsanne

Details

Location: 535 Bents Rd, Ballandean 4382.

Hours: Tastings by appointment.
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