Alex Supervising the Verdelho Grapes going into the Crusher de-stemmer
Alex Supervising the Verdelho grapes going into the crusher de-stemmer

Vintage 2019 is now well underway at the winery and there is a buzz in the air. We love this time of year. It’s full of action, with grapes arriving sporadically between now and April/May and each variety reveals their own story that reflects mother nature over the last year.

Abby and Cassidy working together to process the grapes.
Abby and Cassidy working together to process the grapes.

Fruit is picked from various vineyards out in the Granite Belt, Queensland and delivered to the winery at Tamborine Mountain very early the following morning. This is done to keep the fruit fresh and out of the summer heat. It’s an early start for the team as they have to forklift the fruit from the truck and weigh it before they can start processing.

Red wine going from ferment to the press
Johanna pushing the skins and juice from the fermentation tank through to the press.

The winemaking crew has expanded this year, and together, they have been working non-stop to process the grapes that will produce our delicious wine. Al has returned for his 11th vintage, taking annual leave from his full-time job as a paramedic. Al is also the resident Vintage chef, and prepares a delicious lunch for the team every day. Alex who worked in our Cellar Door is now our full-time Cellar Hand and has fully immersed himself in his passion of winemaking. He has been on the front line with Al to ensure Vintage runs smoothly and efficiently. The newest addition to the winery team this year is Johanna. She’s been loving her first Vintage and experiencing all aspects of the job from working in the lab, to eagerly jumping into one of the fermenting tanks to transfer the mushy grapes to the press. We’ve also had the pleasure of a short visit from Abby, the daughter of our Chief Winemaker Jon, and her classmate Cassidy who are in their final year of Oenology at the University of Adelaide.

Of course, Jon hasn’t stopped since the first truck load arrived. It’s been all hands-on deck to transform the fruit into the exceptional wine we know and love.

Sauvignon Blanc Grapes
Sauvignon Blanc Grapes

Winemaking involves many steps and processes which can be dependent on the variety. Red grapes for example are left in an open fermenter overnight where the juice pulls out the flavours and colours from the skins and seeds of the grapes. A delicious, sweet aroma wafts through the winery on these days. Different types of oak, will also impart a unique flavour in the wine. Our Wild Ferment Chardonnay has already been put into barrels to begin maturing and ageing to perfection.

Hunna in Fermenter Tank
Johanna in the tank.

What varieties can we look forward to tasting in the next few years? We’ve already received our Verdelho, Sauvignon Blanc, Fiano, Viognier, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grapes with the other varieties arriving in the coming months. We are very excited about the quality and are confident these wines will be exquisite once they are ready for bottling.

The long days have been worth it with some of the team enjoying a glass or two alongside a cheese platter prepared coincidentally by the photography team last Friday afternoon.

Although fruit arrives every now and then during Vintage, if you visit between February and the beginning of May you’ll likely see some action. Keep an eye on our Instagram stories as this is how we’ll notify of the arrival of grapes. As we are only a 1 hour drive from Brisbane or the Gold Coast, plan a spontaneous trip up to see the winery in action.

Alex, Al and Jed Celebrating Vintage 2019
Alex, Al and Jed before they start processing the grapes.

If you want to experience a more intimate, access all areas tour of the beginning to end process, join us for our Grape to Glass event on Sunday the 3rd of March. We are opening the winery to the public and showcasing the equipment we use, our barrel room and all that goes into our winemaking, Tickets are $20 which includes the tour, four samples of wine, a glass of your favourite variety from the tour and live music. Fryer and Brimstone food truck will also be creating delicious snacks available to purchase while you enjoy the atmosphere.

Get your tickets here.

Barrels being filled
Barrels being prepared to be filled.