In amongst a solid stream of negative press, I was pleased today to see a clever initiative from the Australian wine industry, and yet again it is driven by medium sized family wine companies.
A group of 12 of, arguably, Australia’s finest family wineries, has joined together to form a marketing organisation (ala NZ’s very successful Family of 12) with the aim to promote super premium Australian wines from real family wineries.
Beyond just the idea, however, the price of admission to this surprisingly exclusive club is set particularly high, with stipulations on environmental ideals, along with ownership of vineyards with a vine age of 50+ years.
Members wineries include
You can read Max Allen’s take here or on Decanter here to get the skinny on the exact details. In particular take a good look at all the wineries involved and marvel at what an impressive list it is. From each and every one of these wineries I could name at least one (and in the case of a few, many) wines that I personally get excited about.
Each and every winery on that list deserves their spot without question, serving to represent the real ‘face’ of Australian wine, which contrasts sharply with the shallow, corporate, ‘industrial’ image that is perpetuated by our larger wine companies.
Well done to all involved.
Oh and finally, another venture worth mentioning is acclaimed Australian wine ambassador Hazel Murphy, who is still doing her bit for Australian wine. Have a look at here latest initiative (below)
Wine legend Hazel Murphy confirmed to TWTW this morning that she is cranking up the old Wine Flights and it’s going well. Wine Flight 2010, set to touch down in February, has 32 members of the wine trade and press confirmed and just eight places remain. “It is really exciting to see the response from the old hands and the new Flighters too, so I have my fingers crossed that before the end of September we will have all the places sold,” Hazel told TWTW. “I am over in Australia for a couple of weeks but not really work, more a holiday, but back in November to get the trip sorted. I am sure it is going to re-enthuse those on the trip and give us new ambassadors too! I can’t wait to show them all the regions and wines that defy the doomsayers (if that is a word). Well, I think so anyway!
“In 1992 when Australia was considered a relatively new wine producer to many in the UK, the idea was conceived to take a sizeable group from the UK trade out to the wineries to let them see what Australia had to offer first hand. With the assistance of a dozen wineries we were able to put together the first Wine Flight of a Lifetime. That trip helped unequivocally to put Australia on the wine map. The group numbered 110, amongst them several writers including Oz Clarke, Robert Joseph and Tim Atkin and all were blown away by the ‘can do’ attitude of the people, the fabulous wines and the excellent and imaginative food. They became some of the best ambassadors for Australian wines and still are. We went on to organise a number of subsequent trips over the years, and after much discussion and with the full backing of Wine Australia, I have now undertaken to organise this Wine Flight. The group will again comprise a mix of press, importers, retail buyers and sommeliers; new ‘Flighters’ as well as old hands and most places were snapped up as soon as whispers of the trip began circulating. It’s the ticket to see what Australia in the 21st Century is all about.”
Make no mistake, folks, this initiative by Hazel has the potential to turn around the fortunes of the Australian wine industry and silence the critics. Email Hazel and tell her she’s doing a bloody good job: [email protected]
(this comes from TWTW, I’m sure Anthony & the crew won’t mind, particularly if you buy a subscription to WBM)