• "Indomitus" — untameable, wild, unconquerable. (Latin translation)
Winemaker Matt Burton

“The Indomitus wines are unique expressions of Semillon and Shiraz. These are wines that marry natural process with carefully placed winemaking artefact; evidence of my hand as a winemaker, attempting to control aspects of the outcome. Hopefully the wines will lead you on a journey of discovery and enjoyment; they are designed to challenge and compel you with every sip.” — Matt Burton, Winemaker


The Indomitus wines have been produced to challenge the winemaking and sensory norms of Semillon and Shiraz, and to lead drinkers on an exploration of style and possibility.

The label imagery for these wines is based on photographs taken of the 12th century Ta Prohm temple located within Cambodia’s sprawling Angkor Wat. Unlike other temples here, Ta Prohm has been left largely undisturbed since discovery. Untouched, the Ta Prohm ruins demonstrate the rule of nature over man-made monuments, once protective hands are withdrawn.

The Indomitus wines represent a departure in both style, and production technique, for Gundog Estate. Indomitus Albus is a Hunter Valley Semillon, which somewhat builds on the foundations laid by the Gundog Estate Wild Semillon, first produced in 2011. The Indomitus Albus offers great aromatic intensity and complexity, a rich, textural mouthfeel, a whisper of residual sweetness, and a wonderful line of natural acidity. Similarly, Indomitus Rutilus represents a departure in style from our Estate Shiraz, but no doubt shares common underpinnings, principally the terroir of the Dahlberg Vineyard in Murrumbateman, Canberra. It offers an exotically spiced nose, savoury palate, and minimal oak influence.

Drawing symbolic comparison with the label art, we left key elements of the production process to the mercy of natural forces. The wines are fermented with indigenous yeast, and minimally fined and stabilised (they may throw a harmless deposit over time). The Shiraz is also only given minimum filtration prior to bottling. Both wines boast a disarming, seductive approachability, which no doubt plays tribute to the positive influence of the natural processes at play during the winemaking, and to the quality of the source vineyards. It is our hope that this openness of style, combined with the discovery of winemaking artefacts carefully placed in the wines, leads drinkers to be both compelled and challenged at the same time.


  • Alc: 10.4%
  • pH: 3.28
  • TA: 6.1 g/L
  • Residual Sugar: 5 g/L

For Indomitus Albus, key winemaking goals were around delivering complex, yet vibrant aromatics, and a rich, textural palate. It was also important to maintain that beautiful line of natural acidity and excellent fruit drive afforded by the Hunter Semillon. To achieve this, we naturally fermented with over 20% skins, including 2% Gewurztraminer, with another 20% cloudy Semillon juice fermented in seasoned oak. We then left the wine on skins and yeast lees until we were satisfied with the mouthfeel (around 3 months), prior to final blending and filtration.

"It's Hunter Semillon, Jim, but not as we know it. Wild ferment, some skin contact and the addition of a smidge of Gewurztraminer have resulted in a wine with classic Semillon light grassiness, but extra layers of grape-pulpy texture and richness." — Max Allen, Gourmet Traveller Magazine

"Includes 2% gewurztraminer, cloudy juice wild-fermented on 25% skins, held on skins and lees for 6 months, bottled without fining, 100 dozen made. Natural wine addicts, get back in your hutch. This isn't yellow or orange, it is pale straw-green, it has no phenolics, and is as fresh as a daisy. There’s a hint of spice on the bouquet, which may or may not be due to the gewurztraminer; other than this, it’s lemon/lemongrass/citrussy acidity all the way to the bank." — 95 Points, James Halliday



  • Alc: 14.1%
  • pH: 3.50
  • TA: 6.5 g/L

Complex aromatics and a textural palate were the key ambitions surrounding the Indomitus Rutilus production. In addition, we were keen to see minimal oak influence, and to craft a more savoury style of Shiraz that could be enjoyed young, ideally with food. Whole bunch fermentation, including 4% Viognier, wild yeast, minimal additions, 12 months maturation in seasoned French oak, and no finings were the tools we used here.

"The colour is vivid and bright, the bouquet perfumed and spicy, the palate elegant and supple, but with a stamp of authority that will underwrite a long future, however attractive the wine is now" — 96 Points, James Halliday

"This is a stunning wine. It has quality dripping from every pore. It's fragrant, spicy, fruity and savoury at once, with firm ropes of tannin and smoky, clovey, meaty nuances aplenty. It will age beautifully." — 96 Points, Campbell Mattinson


"The Indomitus wines are made to enjoy now or to cellar. Like the jungle reclaiming the Ta Prohm temple, the natural processes underpinning wine maturation will always prevail, and continue to shape the wines indefinitely."

We recommend decanting both the Rutilus, and Albus prior to serving. Each will benefit from gentle aeration. Ideally, the Albus should be served above 12 degrees Celsius, so take care not to over-chill. These wines will also reveal another dimension with food.

The wines are available as a mixed two pack (one of each variety) for $90, or as a mixed four pack (two of each variety) for $180. The wines are delivered in beautifully presented twin packs, along with winemaking / tasting notes. A four bottle purchase maximum applies.

If you are interested in purchasing the INDOMITUS wines, please contact the Cellar Door on 02 4998 6873, or email sales@gundogestate.com.au.

The Photographer

Photographer Aaron Burton

Aaron Burton, brother of the winemaker, is an adventurous photographer and filmmaker. His passion for recording hidden and unusual stories has taken him around the globe. Like the early explorers, Aaron's visual narratives break with convention in order to navigate new ways of seeing. His work has been exhibited nationally and internationally. These images emerged from an archaeological assignment to ascertain extensive visual documentation of the incredible Angkor ruins of Cambodia.