About De Lisio Wines
De Lisio Wines is a proudly family owned and operated McLaren Vale winery, founded in 2002, and continuing to produce award-winning, highly sought after wines.
Winemaker Tony De Lisio has viticulture’s tendrils snaking their way through his family in South Australia where he first grew vines in Clarendon with his father, as well as back in his native Italy where De Lisios continue to tend vines and orchards around Castellino.
We believe that wine is all about enjoyment, and as a boutique family winery, we are able to stay true to traditional methods, offer minimal interference with the processes, and produce unique, premium wines for cellaring, celebrations and weeknight dinners.
Winemaking is a living and growing craft, and the entire De Lisio family is excited to contribute their unique skills and ideas, to your experience.
Tastings are hosted at our winery by appointment only – contact us by email at [email protected] or by phone on 0423 146 217.
Climate and Harvesting
McLaren Vale is 40 km South of Adelaide and has hills to the east providing gully breezes, and the ocean to the west, allowing the cooling sea breezes to temper the region’s warm to hot summers for extended maturation of the grapes. This extended ripening period allows the fruit extra time to maximise flavour and ripeness whilst maintaining fruit vibrancy. Harvest usually begins in late February continuing through to late April depending on the vineyard site and growing season.
McLaren Vale and Sub-Regions
Although the townships of Clarendon, Blewitt Springs and Kangarilla are all within 5-8 km of each other, ‘as the crow flies’, they have micro-climates and soil differences which vary dramatically. It is because of these differences that De Lisio Wines seeks out and purchases fruit from vineyards selected to contribute the unique flavours, aromatics and structure that represent their particular ‘terroir’ and in turn provide the winemaker with fruit and the challenge to produce a multi-faceted, complex and complete wine. Identifying these differences requires intimate and firsthand knowledge. Managing a 37.5 acre family owned vineyard in Clarendon and more than 180 acres on Seaview Road McLaren Vale for well over 15 years has given me a great affinity and insight into the best way to identify and take advantage of these special differences.
De Lisio Wines sources fruit from three different producers whose vineyards are planted on the shallow, ‘hungry’ and infertile red and chocolate coloured loamy, calcareous clay over limestone and rock, at Seaview Road, 3 km north of the McLaren Vale township. This area of McLaren Vale is so highly prized that there are moves afoot to have Seaview Road classified and recognised as an official sub-region and so stated on the bottles. I have long sung the praises of this part of McLaren Vale as it is especially suited to Shiraz, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Grenache which produce intense, powerful fruit driven wines and provide the backbone (approximately 85%) of all the De Lisio fruit.
Although only about 10% of the total fruit intake is sourced out of the Clarendon region, it is however, a very important parcel. This particular vineyard is at about 250 metres above sea level and is markedly cooler with harvest being approximately three weeks after the Seaview Road vineyards have been picked. We source Shiraz from this vineyard and the extended maturation time develops the grapes, producing wine with a briary, mineral and blueberry flavour profile. This cooler climate fruit has a great tannin structure which is so important for the age-ability of a wine.
Blewitt Springs and Kangarilla
The other 5% of De Lisio fruit is sourced from vineyards planted in the deep white sands of Kangarilla and Blewitt Springs. Located roughly in-between Clarendon and McLaren Vale and having similar climatic growing conditions to Clarendon these vineyards are planted to non-irrigated Grenache bush vines, up to 70 years old. Very low average yields of 2 tonnes an acre allows the fruit to develop fantastic concentration of flavour, floral nuances and huge tannins especially in a dry year and is the reason why this fruit is regarded as some of the best Grenache in the region.
It is simple to me — I love to blend. Blending allows me to create a style reflecting what De Lisio Wines is all about, delivering a wine with texture and structure, richness, weight and length and most of all, the genuine complexity that can be best achieved by blending the best, seeking the varied and wonderful diversity the different terroir can offer. Simply put, we like to supply enjoyment. I always say you can buy the colour green but it is far more artistic to blend yellow and blue to create your own shade of green; why paint with one colour when the rainbow is available?
TONY DE LISIO