Chester works with individual parcels of fruit that display different flavour profiles that are influenced by the unique soil characteristics and meso climates of our vineyards. Each parcel is picked and vinified separately to highlight the individual characters that contribute complexity to the final blend.
Chester assumes dual roles as chief wine maker and viticulturist at d’Arenberg. He spends a great deal of his time in the vineyards prior to harvest sampling grapes to determine ripeness and flavour intensity. This in part explains his exceptional wine making talent of understanding the characteristics of each individual vineyard.
Chester likens his wine making process to the art of sculpture; a very hands on-on process that requires an intimate knowledge and feel for your raw materials before you are able to express your artistic vision.
Chester’s philosophy is to make wines that have great fragrance, fruit palate texture and length. The finish of the wine must have a natural, fine balance of acidity and a complex structure of tannins.
"I aim to make loudest, most flowery fragrant and most fruit-flavoured wines that have great palate texture and are free of excess oak. I look for tannins that are long, lively, gritty and youthful with fragrant fruit-mineral notes.
It is my aim to never make a wine that looks sterile, like some other reputable wineries produce. I want to see it all my wines; I want a wine that has edges of all sorts of complexities such as spices, meats, compost and forest floors etc…
One other focus is to make a wine that is not going to go too earthy or bitumen - tarry with age. Some producers make wines that have oodles of fruit; they’re ripe, rich and gutsy, but in a few years these wines may show inherent problems from their production. That is fat, blousy, and chocolate and tar with short palate life. This is also the opposite of what we aim to produce."