This month Genders Wines and the McLaren Vale region lost one of its great figures, with Keith Genders passing away. Below are a few words from Diana Genders.
My Dad Keith Genders died on February 27 2013. He will be deeply missed by family, friends and old winemakers. He was eighty five.
Keith was only twenty when he purchased the vineyard in 1948. It must have been quite daunting for such a young fellow. He became one of the great innovators of the 1960's and 1970's in the McLaren Vale wine industry. When he built the first shed for Genders winery in 1968, Genders was the first new winery in McLaren Vale in fifty years. Many of today's small winemakers in McLaren Vale were inspired by Keith's actions, and followed to start their own small wineries.
Keith introduced stainless steel tanks to McLaren Vale in 1968. He hooked up with a young engineer by the name of Ron Potter and together built the old fermentors which still stand in the cellars.Keith was the first to use the Venus machine pre-pruner. This machine has helped to make great financial savings in the vineyards.
Keith gave tireless help to other winemakers starting out. He will be remembered as a generous, hardworking and loyal gentleman of simple tastes and a riotous sense of humor.
Keith had a fabulous palate. I remember once giving him a glass of Riesling. After one sip he said "Oh, Pikes!" And it was. Keith taught me the power of making do, of improvising and the beauty of simple living.
Cheers to Keith