Friday, March 16, 2012

Balgownie Estate 40th vintage

The patricians of the Yarra Valley beat Stuart Anderson by a year or two when he established Balgownie Estate in Bendigo in 1969. Nonetheless, he was an important part in the change in perceptions about what was possible in Victoria, and was responsible for many great wines until, for family reasons, he decided to sell the venture. After an unhappy stewardship by Mildara, Balgownie is now owned by brothers Des and Rod Forrester, and their friend, Bill Freeman, who have extended the reach of the business into the Yarra Valley.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Rathbone Family Wine Assets

I was saddened to read that Doug Rathbone has announced the family’s wine assets are being offered for sale. It was a vision splendid to assemble wineries with strong brands, and make them stronger still. The foundation stone, which he and his family built, was Yering Station in the Yarra Valley; thereafter came Mount Langi Ghiran in the Grampians, Parker Coonawarra Estate and Xanadu in Margaret River. The styles of the wines made at the winery were distinctive, both as an imprint of the region, but also the very good team of winemakers he was able to  assemble.