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Lengs & Cooter

In the 1980's, South Australians Karel Lengs and Colin Cooter formed an informal club called 'Bach D'Or' with friends and bought some Grenache grapes from a small grower at McLaren Vale. The Olive Hill winery lent them facilities and, amid much hilarity, a wine was made. Someone suggested they put it in an amateur wine makers' show and, much to everybody's surprise, it won a bronze medal. The early success stimulated the group to bigger and better things. Together they bought parcels of grapes and whatever equipment they could beg or borrow was pressed into service - a garage became a winery, a milk vat an open fermenter. While keen to maintain their amateur links, Lengs and Cooter wanted to become a bit more professional. A few short courses in wine making put them on the right track, and eventually they decided to get a licence to produce wine commercially. Limited resources still meant borrowed equipment and winery space, but generous advice was afforded by fellow winemakers like Doug Bowen, Wayne Dutschke and John Monten.

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