For more than 20 years Suzanne and Ian Little of The Little Wine Company have been pioneering new and emerging varieties in the Hunter Valley. Their range of wines reflect the long and winding road they took to ensure these alternative varieties are the best they can be, teaching themselves the best ways to grow and make these through trial and error.
The Little Wine Company was founded in 2000 by Suzanne and Ian Little and specialise in alternative varieties. Both Suzanne and Ian spent their early careers making the traditional varieties of the Hunter Valley – Shiraz, Semillon and Chardonnay. So when the two decided to strike out with their own label, they chose to experiment with new varieties. Now, after more than 20 years of pioneering new and emerging varieties in the Hunter Valley, their range of wines reflects their long and winding road of discovery.
At the time the Littles owned a large vineyard in Pokolbin, however they realised that one patch wouldn’t be enough for the range of varieties they wanted to create. They then established strong relationships with smaller, supportive growers in the Broke Fordwich region to trial these new varieties and have continued these relationships.
Experimenting with these new varieties has certainly been a learning process and has come with its challenges. When working with new varieties there is no bank of knowledge to draw on and so with that comes a learning curve of how to grow and make each variety. However, Suzanne and Ian enjoy the challenge.
Early on the two decided that Ian would have final veto over red wines and Suzanne would have the final veto over whites. The philosophy of The Little Wine Company is pretty simple – they want to make the best wines they can that they both enjoy drinking.
2021 The Little Wine Company Pinot Gris
Nose: Aromas of honeysuckle and pear with a beautiful floral lift.
Palate: Richly textured but with a fresh, dry finish.
Pairings: Perfect white for salads and seafood.
2021 The Little Wine Company Verdelho
Nose: Tropical fruits, citrus, and oak.
Palate: Loaded with tropical fruit flavours and a long citrus finish.
Pairings: The fuller flavours and great texture makes this a great choice with a wide variety of dishes or simply by itself.
2022 The Little Wine Company Pecorino
Nose: Lovely aromatic crispness and hints of apple.
Palate: Delicious crispy crunchy palate and delicate pear and pink lady apple flavours.
Pairings: Ideal with seafood or chicken dishes.
2021 The Little Wine Company Vermentino
Nose: Wonderful aromas of jasmine, white nectarine and a touch of warm spice.
Palate: The palate is textural and full bodied with flavours of pear and crisp minerality.
Pairings: The ultimate food wine, this pairs well with salads, pastas, and chicken and fish dishes.
2019 The Little Wine Company Barbera
Nose: Blackberries and subtle spice.
Palate: With its plush fruit characters of currants and blackberries, and its soft, supple tannins this is a wine that is dangerously moreish.
Pairings: Pair with pastas, lamb dishes, and roasts.
2019 The Little Wine Company Sangiovese
Nose: Cherry, leather, smoke and spices.
Palate: Medium bodied yet complex, this wine is all about flavour. Sweet cherry and leather tones and loaded with smoky chocolate and mushroom characters. The savoury tannins and complex fruit characters make this and ideal food wine.
Pairings: Great with any tomato based dishes.
2017 The Little Wine Company Little Gem Shiraz
Nose: The intensity of the fruit is apparent on the nose, with aromas of blackcurrant and spice.
Palate: The palate is seamless and silky with voluptuous layers if fruit and oak flavours. The core of cassis and berry flavour underpins the entire structure of this wine allowing for long term cellaring.
Pairings: Hard cheeses, red meats, and pasta dishes.