Kilikanoon was founded in 1997 when winemaker and proprietor Kevin Mitchell purchased the property of the same name in the hamlet of Penwortham in South Australia's picturesque Clare Valley. Hailing from a long line of wine grape growers, Kevin now had the opportunity to turn the vision of creating his own wine brand into a reality.
Kevin's father Mort Mitchell has been a defining influence, planting and tending to Kilikanoon's Golden Hillside suite of vineyards including the famed Mort's Block, for over 40 years. Kevin's fascination with terroir is a result of years spent playing and eventually working in these vineyards alongside his father. The first Kilikanoon branded wines from the 1997 vintage were four single vineyard wines, each from Kevin and Mort's vineyards.
These were the 'Oracle' Shiraz, 'Prodigal' Grenache, 'Blocks Road' Cabernet and 'Mort's Block' Watervale Riesling.
Kilikanoon's expansion has been made possible by invaluable partnerships, together with the acquisition of, and access to, outstanding vineyards in the most esteemed grape growing regions in South Australia, including the Barossa Valley and McLaren Vale. From humble beginnings with just 25,000 bottles produced from the first vintage, Kilikanoon has grown significantly, now exporting to over 25 countries. The marque has become one of the leading wine brands in Australia.
Kilikanoon has been recognised both in Australia and internationally, receiving high praise from some of the world's most respected wine critics. The 2002 Clare Valley Wine Show chaired by prominent Australian wine writer and judge, Huon Hooke, propelled Kilikanoon into the spotlight, winning 6 of the 7 trophies awarded. Going from strength to strength, the Oracle Shiraz has twice won 'Best Shiraz' at International wine shows, while more recently, James Halliday's Australian Wine Companion named Kilikanoon 'Winery of the Year' in 2013. In 2014, Kevin Mitchell was inducted into the inaugural Clare Valley Hall of Fame as Winemaker of the Year.
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