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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... Placing pinot amongst the pastures»
There were two scrub covered parcels of land, just outside Pokolbin village along McDonalds Road, that local council had long set aside for use as cricket ground and cemetery. Both were ultimately auctioned off to the highest bidders and sown to vine. A third undeveloped site became the subject of a long running feud among the new and old neighbours. Dodgy invoices between the rivals were exchanged and the division of firewood became a further cause of contention. A truce was eventually called by the two protagonists, Brokenwood and Hungerford Hill, for the sake of healthy viticulture. The nascent blocks achieved international renown as the eminent Cricket Pitch and the Langtons Listed Graveyard.. Sociable soils make for healthy vine»
There are four tiny patches of vine at Scotchman's Hill, which have been mollycoddled by Robin Brockett, since the start of his tenure as chief winemaker in the 1980s. Excruciatingly limited after a strict pruning and rigorous sorting of fruit, they each yield a mere hundred cases of wine. Brockett has set aside the precious harvests of these superior blocks for his own label, a personal project to hand craft the finest of vintage, an exclusive range of the Bellarine's most elite single vineyard efforts. So besotted is Brockett by the spectacular quality of fruit from these four regal parcels, he has imported two 800 Litre Tuscan vinification Amphora from the Brunello commune of Montalcino. Whole.. Brockett begets the best of bellarine»
Kaesler
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