This honour is by invitation only, and is bestowed on five or six people biannually who are considered to have made an outstanding contribution to the district. This not only includes winemaking and grape growing activities, but other endeavours that benefit and promote the Barossa community over a long period of time.
Hans was born in Rotterdam, Holland, and at the age of 15 immigrated to Sydney to join his father and half brothers and sisters. His early working life was spent in the airline industry in Australia and Hong Kong.
After 26 years in Hong Kong, Hans and his wife Fransien searched the world for a community in which to retire, somewhere that offered history, seasonality, tradition and the finer things in life – good wine, good food and good fellowship. They found all of these in the Barossa Valley, and move to the area in 1995, producing their first vintage in 1996.
The Haan wines have won numerous medals and trophies, but the highlight was in 2005 when Haan Wines won the Chateau Pichon Longueville Trophy for the World’s Best Blended Red Wine with their Wilhelmus at the International Wine & Spirit Competition in London from a total of 5,100 wine entries from 57 countries. At the same Competition Haan Wines won Australian Wine Producer of the Year, competing against 453 Australian winery entries.
Hans has been innovative in working with new grape varieties, particularly Viognier, and now has one of the largest private holdings of Viognier in the Barossa.
He is also a member of the International Wine & Food Society, South Australian Wine & Food Society, Barossa Rotary Club and the Tanunda Liedertafel, as well as supporting many local projects and community activities.
For more information on the Barons of Barossa, and in particular Baron Hans Rudolf Haan, visit their website on www.baronsofbarossa.com.