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Airline pilots make surprisingly good wine. Their appreciation of the sciences, a respect for the weather and a bird's eye view of the land, all invaluable to the winemaker's art. John Ellis would take every opportune weekend away from his regular New York Paris route, to pursue a passion for viticulture. He planted the first commercial Cabernet Merlot vines in the Hamptons and found time between trans atlantic flights to work vintages amongst the Grand Cru vineyards of La Bourgogne. Ellis ultimately made the great lifelong sea change in favour of our land downunder. He settled on a farmstead outside Leongatha, amongst the slow ripening pastures of Gippsland and established a vineyard called Bellvale. It is now a place of fully mature vines and old world Burgundian techniques, sur lie et sauvage, barrel ferments and batonnage. Bellvale remains artisanally small batch, just 23 hectares of vine yields a measured harvest of spectacular quality Chardonnay and Pinot.. Placing pinot amongst the pastures»
An illustrious vineyard winery of great historical import, the Kay Brothers Amery property is planted to sacred vines which can be traced back to cuttings transplanted from the original Hardy site at Tintara. Holding pride of place as one of Mclaren Vale's first commercial vineyards, the winemaking practices at Kay Brothers have remained largely unchanged since establishment in the nineteenth century. An ancient basket press, painted bright red, is still employed to gently crush grapes in the traditional old world way. The exquisite Kay Brothers range remains one of the most sensational values in superior vintages of new world wine, the fruit of distinguished old vines, family operated since establishment, an essential experience for every enthusiast of the timeless and enduring Aussie Claret style... The essence & excellence of old mclaren vale vines»
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