Thursday, 7 January 2021

Tasmanian wine pioneer dies

The Tasmanian wine industry is mourning the death of influential winemaker Peter Althaus. 

Swiss-born Althaus, a former IBM executive, died at the age of 79, just two years after selling Domaine A/Stoney Vineyard to Moorilla owner David Walsh. 

He ran Stoney Vineyard/Domaine A for 30 years, establishing a stellar reputation for Bordeaux-style reds. 

Along with his wife, Ruth, Althaus saw potential in Tasmania as an ideal location and latitude to produce cool-climate wines and played a key role in Tasmania's emergence as a serious player in the wine industry. 

They purchased Stoney Vineyard, the oldest winery in the Coal River Valley, in 1989 from George and Priscilla Park, who planted the original single-acre 16 years earlier. 

Releasing their first wine in 1990, the Althauses continued to produce wines at the site until 2018 when they sold the winery to David Walsh and handed the reigns to Moorilla’s winemaker, Conor van der Reest.

"Domaine A is a remarkable brand we are proud and grateful to remain custodians of," the Domaine A team said. "We will continue to honour his winemaking legacy in each bottle we produce."

Althaus's death followed a New Year's Eve fall in his native Switzerland. 

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