Why did we choose to move to Tasmania? We were living in Adelaide at the time so from a wine point of view, there were plenty of wine regions to choose from. Julian, a qualified winemaker, had started out with wine in Mudgee; done a stint in the US, then McLaren Vale. But he was increasingly attracted to Tasmanian wines, Pinot Noir & Sparkling in particular. With a science background and first degree in climatology he also had an eye on climate change and the implications for grape growing.
Julian landed a vintage role at Bay of Fires winery in Pipers River with the well regarded winemaker, Fran Austin whose partner, Shane Holloway had recently taken over nearby Delamere Vineyard.
They were a part of ‘new wave’ going on in the Tamar Valley at the time- younger winemakers who had connections to Tasmania were coming back to the island after working elsewhere and getting stuck in to their own wine businesses. Joe Holyman was kicking goals at Stoney Rise; Bec Duffy was ramping things up at Holm Oak; Cynthea Semmens and her husband David Feldheim moved back from SA to work on the family property, Marion’s Vineyard.
Moores Hill (planted in 1997) was up for sale. The vineyard was well established with a reputation for consistent quality. There was a cellar door, in a good location, easy for visitors to find. There was a house and plenty of space. We could see lots of opportunities to grow the business. So we took the plunge, 6 months later, we’d moved in and Tasmania was our new home.
8 years on and we’re not going anywhere. Running a small wine business with 2 young girls means life is very busy but we enjoy the community we’re a part of. We relish the amazing produce we can access so easily. Areas of pristine wilderness are a short drive away. We've met lots of talented people who are building small businesses like ours. Tasmania is quaint and quirky and we really have escaped the rat race. There's plenty more to say about our 'tree change', watch this space.