SC Pannell is a small, family owned and operated winery, established 2004 by Stephen Pannell and wife Fiona Lindquist. The winery was founded to focus on Stephen's passion for McLaren Vale and its ability to produce dry grown, environmentally sustainable Shiraz and Grenache. In his capacity as Chief Red Wine Maker at BRL Hardy, Pannell gained an intimate knowledge of the region’s vineyards and sub-regional variations, he was able to secure exquisite parcels of old vine Grenache and Shiraz from low yielding, dry grown sites. He wanted to make wines from the region that express their sense of place and define the character and expression of McLaren Vale.
Stephen Pannell has been named one of the 50 most inﬂuential contributors to the world of wine by the UK's Decanter Magazine. His extensive knowledge and experience has been garnered over many years, working with some of Australia’s most iconic wineries, including Wirra Wirra, Tintara and BRL Hardy where he was Chief Red Winemaker from 1999 to 2003. He has worked numerous overseas vintages at such places as Domaine des Comtes Lafon in Burgundy, Chateau Mouton Rothschild in Bordeaux and G.D. Vajra in Barolo.
Pannell's choice of vinification techniques remain decidedly old world, open fermentation, natural yeast and maturation in large format oak, to ensure that the natural expression of vineyard, fruit and wine are all preserved. Components of whole bunches may be introduced, vintage permitting, to incite partial carbonic maceration, extract fine stem tannins and enhance complexity.
Highlights in Stephen’s career include winning the title of International Red Winemaker of the Year at the International Wine Challenge in London, winning the Jimmy Watson Memorial Trophy at the Royal Melbourne Wine Show and twice winning the Max Schubert Trophy at the Adelaide Wine Show. In 2011 Stephen won the Mclaren Vale’s top award and the title of 2011 Bushing King.
Stephen has also turned his talents to harvests from Adelaide Hills, the escarpment which runs above McLaren Vale in the south and continues through toward Barossa Valley in the north, to create a range of textural, aromatic whites, as well as a highly awarded cool climate Syrah.
After returning from working with Aldo Vajra in Barolo in 2004 he received a request to look at a Nebbiolo vineyard in Gumeracha in the northern area of Adelaide Hills. The vineyard is planted with five different clones, including clone 230, which is the preferred clone in Barolo and SC Pannell has been making Nebbiolo from this fantastic vineyard ever since. SC Pannell Nebbiolo 2008 won Best Wine of Show at the Australian Alternative Varieties Wine Show in 2012. The year 2012 also saw Pannell purchase his first vineyard in the Blewitt Springs area of McLaren Vale. This is a vineyard Stephen has coveted since his early days at Hardy’s. The construction of a cellar door ensured exciting times ahead for the SC Pannell wineworks.
SC Pannell Grenache is fast becoming legendary in the world of international fine wine enthusiasts. It received the Melbourne Wine Show Trophy for Best Other Varietal. In the same week, also winning trophies for Best Grenache. "I wouldn't be surprised if in 40 years time that we're talking about this guy as one of the greatest Australian winemakers ever to make wine in our age!" -Nick Stock Penguin Good Australian Wine Guide, "This is a label which is well on the way to icon-status!" -James Halliday Australian Wine Companion