Advance Australia Fair: oh the irony!

As well as marking the middle of Winter, July is the month when the Australian government demonstrates, with cold hard cash, that it understands the challenges faced by small wineries in Australia and New Zealand(by virtue of CER) and does something about it. For us, that something is a $15,000 cheque representing a full rebate […]

2013 Vintage Report: A Goldilocks Season

  Growing season (Oct-Apr) data: Rainfall (mm)  Growing Degree Days (heat units) I will remember 2013 as a “Goldilocks” season and vintage – yields slightly above long-term averages and weather not too hot, not too cold, not too wet, not too dry (while we had an extended dry period a look at the monthly rainfall figures will […]

Excise = state sanctioned theft

Well, the government confirmed the addition of another 3c a litre to its multi-million-dollar program of stealing money from wineries and rural communities aka Excise. To put that in perspective, we are a very small winery and in our 20-odd years of operation we have now paid over a million dollars in excise! If we […]

Part 3 – Where did that fortnight go?

Well, my best intentions to keep this diary regular flew out the window once we started picking. In my defence, everything decided it was going to ripen at the same moment and a general clamour of pick me, no pick me, ensued. As I get my head briefly above the parapet I can report that […]

Part 2 – 22/3/13 – not so fast sunshine!

I might have been a bit optimistic about harvest starting next week. Today’s testing results as follows: It looks as though the big rain this week, 92mm all told, has pushed us back a bit more than I expected so we will probably be underway around our normal start date of the beginning of April, […]

Part 1 – 20/3/13 – a week out from picking?

First round of grape testing last week had sugars in the following range: Based on those numbers we were looking at starting to pick around the 25th of March but the 80mm of drought-breaking rain this week will push that back a few days. Everything is looking in pristine condition and the rain which was […]

2012 Vintage Report

Growing season (Oct-Apr) data: Rainfall (mm)  Growing Degree Days (heat units) I’ve been scratching my head for some time trying to make sense of this season and I’m still largely clutching at straws to explain how the seasonal data above can have produced the quality of grapes, not outstanding but certainly good, solid quality, that […]

Vine Age – the interview

I was interviewed earlier this year as part of a student’s (amy hopkinson) dissertation research on the impact of vine age on Pinot Noir quality. Here is a transcript of the interview Roger Parkinson, June 2012 A: the important of vine age on Pinot Noir quality? R: Ah, it’s a good question, our oldest Pinot […]

Polishing up the crystal ball for vintage 2012

14 March 2012 The land of the long, white cloud has truly lived up to its name this growing season. At the end of February, Growing Degree Days (GDD) had reached a paltry 756 heat units. Nearly half way through March we have accumulated a further 50 heat units to  reach 806 heat units in […]

2011 Vintage Report – the season of weird

Rainfall (mm)   Growing Degree Days (heat units) “When the going gets weird, the weird turn professional” – Hunter S. Thompson. The season of weird got underway with a Spring devoid of frosts, the first for many years. Having finally installed a wind machine in the Home Block last year the frost gods had the […]

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