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Ultimate expression of St Hugo wine released

Australian wine brand St Hugo is launching a new range of wines named Vetus Purum. Brand owner Pernod Ricard Winemakers says it will be produced in extremely limited quantities from only the finest fruit sourced from ancient (vetus) and pure (purum) terroir.

The launch of the Vetus Purum range will be supported with in-store visibility and POS, PR and digital marketing. It will be targeted at consumers who look  for super-premium brands and who appreciate ‘terroir’ in wine, wines with heritage and wines that can be cellared.

The range, which leads with a Cabernet Sauvignon in line with the brand’s first wine launched in 1983, takes its name from the Latin words ‘vetus’ and ‘purum’ that were placed on the family crest of Gramp & Sons by Hugo Gramp in the 1920s. They symbolised Hugo’s unwavering belief that selecting the finest fruit from ancient and pure terroir was the key to making truly exceptional quality wine.

With St Hugo Vetus Purum, ‘Vetus’ is embodied by the ancient soils of the Barossa Valley, which at 200 million years old are some of the oldest vineyard soils in the world. St Hugo Vetus Purum Single Vineyard Barossa Shiraz 2010 is crafted from hand-picked grapes from the Koch Willandra Vineyard in the Barossa, where low-yielding vines grown in ancient and lean soils produce fruit of exceptional quality.

‘Purum’ makes reference to the pure and unspoilt terroir of Coonawarra, where Antarctic winds blow over the region from the Southern Ocean, ensuring long, cool ripening seasons. St Hugo Vetus Purum Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon 2010 is crafted predominantly from grapes from the Flint Vineyard in the remote north of Coonawarra, where the region’s unique terra rossa soil concentrates flavour in small berries as water drains away through the limestone. 

St Hugo Wines chief winemaker, Sam Kurtz, says: “These have been incredibly special wines to make, and I took great care to follow Hugo’s guidance by selecting only the finest fruit from ancient and pure terroir. I truly believe that with Vetus Purum we have arrived at the purest expression of Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon, and a single-vineyard Shiraz of the quality that can only be achieved in the Barossa’s ancient soils.”

St Hugo Vetus Purum is launching initially in Australia duty free in April 2014, before rolling out to Hong Kong (July 2014), selected Asian airports (August 2014), US and China (late 2014).

The packaging was designed by Landor Sydney to reflect the super-premium nature of the wines. The copper colour used for the Shiraz reflects the brand’s focus on ‘Vetus’ – the ancient soils of the Barossa; while the bronze colour used for the Cabernet Sauvignon reflects ‘Purum’ – the pure and remote terroir of Coonawarra. The bottle necks are numbered to signify the product’s exclusivity. Artisan-style labels featuring the family crest reflect the craftsmanship in the wines, with the Gramp & Sons signature included to illustrate the brand’s family heritage.

The wines are individually hand-packaged in premium leather gateway opening gift cylinders as a further testament to the exclusivity and super-premium nature of this range. They include a small, bilingual (English & Chinese) tasting note booklet with a note from St Hugo Wines Chief Winemaker, Sam Kurtz.

St Hugo Vetus Purum Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon 2010 (RRP: AUD $188) – cellaring potential exceeds 20 years if kept under ideal conditions.

St Hugo Vetus Purum Single Vineyard Barossa Shiraz 2010 (RRP: AUD $188) – cellar this wine for the next 10 years and beyond and it will reveal additional layers of complexity.


17 April 2014 - Felicity Murray The Drinks Report, editor