2016 White Label Ripasso
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Ripasso is the Italian term used in reference to the re-passing of a wine from one ferment over the skins of another. In our case we have passed some of our 2016 vintage shiraz from our 40-year-old Timbervines vineyard over the skins of several different varieties from the 2017 vintage. The mystery for the drinker is to figure out what skins we have used for the re-fermentation.

Growing Season

The 2016 vintage was a cooler vintage In the Hunter Valley producing more elegant softer styles of Shiraz. This base wine was passed over the 2017 vintage which was a warmer vintage and enabled us to build more body and stronger tannins In to the 2016 base wine.


The fruit that makes up the Shiraz base wine from 2016 was handpicked off 40yr old vines grown on the rich red volcanic soils of the Fordwich Sill. We choose a block that has the ability to build more complexity in to the fruit. The skins that we pass this wine over are chosen based on the vineyards that are performing best that particular year, as well as what additional nuances of tannin and flavour will complement the base wine to build complexity.


Only in very good vintages like 2016 do I keep a small volume of top-quality shiraz in reserve in oak to re-ferment it over another later excellent vintage. It must be a vintage where we get perfectly ripe fruit to ensure the finished wine has taken up only ripe tannins and fruit characters. The base wine from 2016 had plush fruit and elegant aromatics with medium tannins and it was re-fermented over different varieties in the 2017 vintage. This has given the wine lots of dense tannins and deep complex fruit characters. It has spent nearly two years in small new and two-year old French oak barriques. This wine is fun to make and is different every year we make it!

Tasting Notes

Medium - Full bodied displaying a subtle combination of spice, plush black forest fruit and tobacco like coupled with nuances of violet and blue fruits and firm velvety tannins.

Wine Composition

pH                                                           3.46

Titratable Acidity                                   6.7g/L

Alcohol                                                   13.5%

Residual Sugar                                       <1g/L 

Food Match

Wagyu brisket, mushroom, celeriac and glazed onion

Cellaring Potential

15 - 20 years


Silver Medal Hunter Valley Wine Show 2019

Silver Medal Sydney Wine Show 2019

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Picture of 2019 Ceres Hill Barbera

2019 Ceres Hill Barbera


Margan Barbera was the variety that established us as ‘pioneers of alternative varieties’. Andrew is a big fan of Italian varieties and we researched this grape to see if it would work here in the Hunter. Back in the late 1990’s the region mainly had the standard line up of iconic Hunters – Semillon, Shiraz and also Chardonnay- and we wanted to see what else would work. Barbera originates from the North West of Italy and we were the first to plant this red grape here in 1998. It’s a long story but the clone we have planted is an Italian original and produces wines of true varietal definition and Italian personality.

Growing Season

Small bunches and intensely flavoured fruit with bright aromatics were a characteristic of the 2019 vintage, resulting in beautifully ripe and healthy fruit that we handpicked early February. Fruit quality was exceptionally high.


Our Barbera vineyard was planted In 1998 with cuttings from an original Italian clone on our Ceres Hill vineyard, just behind the winery on a streak of red volcanic soil. The great thing about Barbera is that it holds its acidity while achieving full flavour (phenological) ripeness making It very suitable to growing In the changing climate.


We hand pick the grapes at optimal ripeness and ferment under cool conditions using cultured, aromatic yeast. The wine was placed in a mixture of small and large older French oak barriques (225 litres) and puncheons (500 litres) where it matured for 12 months prior to bottling.

Tasting Notes

The wine is vivid purple in its youth with lifted aromas of red fruits- strawberry, raspberry, cherry and red current. The palate reflects the nose but also has savoury bramble berry and fresh mulberry notes. Touches of spicy star anise add extra interest and the tannins are soft and silky. The bright acidity gives a long, refreshing finish.

Wine Composition

pH                                                          3.46

Titratable Acidity                                7.0g/L

Alcohol                                                  13.5%

Residual Sugar                                     <1g/L

Food Match

It is a great food wine as the acid cuts through richer red meats like lamb. It matches well with hard cheese and is lighter in body and alcohol than many red wines. 

Cellaring Potential


Picture of 2019  Saxonvale Shiraz Mourvedre

2019 Saxonvale Shiraz Mourvedre


These two varieties are planted as a Field Blend on the Saxonvale Vineyard. The entire Hunter has Shiraz vines, but we are not sure who had the foresight to plant the Mourvèdre back in the late 1960’s. However, we now have this vineyard and are glad they did. The original plantings were trained as ‘bush vines’ and the variety mix is about 85% Shiraz and 15% Mourvèdre. We first released this wine in 2005 and it is a consistent favourite with a real cult following.

Growing Season

Small bunches and intensely flavoured fruit with bright aromatics was a characteristic of the 2019 vintage, resulting in beautifully ripe and healthy fruit that we hand picked in mid January. Fruit quality was exceptionally high.


Planted as a field blend, the grapes were picked from a 3 hectare block on our Saxonvale vineyard. Mourvèdre thrives in a hot, dry climate and produces small bunches of intensely flavoured berries. The Mourvèdre ripens later than the Shiraz so we wait until it is ready and pick it all together. The Shiraz is very ripe at this stage, so the style of wine is bigger and has a higher potential alcohol than our other reds.


The grapes were picked and co-fermented under cool conditions using cultured aromatic yeast. The wine was then placed in new and old French oak barriques where it matured for 12 months prior to bottling. The intense tannins of the Mourvèdre help lift the spicy notes of the Shiraz.

Tasting Notes

Aromas of mulberry and black currants, followed by a palate of cocoa and rich forest fruits. Fine tannins and subtle oak frame the fruit providing a fuller style of Hunter Valley Shiraz with lifted aromatics from the Mourvèdre.

 Wine Composition

pH                                                           3.42

Titratable Acidity                                7.1g/L

Alcohol                                                  14%

Residual Sugar                                    < 1g/L

 Vine Age

60 years

 Food Match

Wagyu Sirloin with roasted fennel and roasted beetroots

 Cellaring Potential

20 + years


Gold medal 2020 Hunter Valley Wine Show

Gold medal 2020 NSW Wine Show

93 points The Real Review Stuart Knox

James Halliday 5 Star Winery 2009 - 2021

Picture of 2019 BC4 Shiraz

2019 BC4 Shiraz

BC4 is code for a heritage Shiraz clone that we have on our Timbervines Vineyard. Our BC4 block is number 4 of 8 blocks of different Heritage Shiraz clones all located within our Fordwich Sill vineyards and planted to red volcanic soils. The intensity of fruit from BC4 has always stood out from other blocks and vineyards so in 2019 we bottled the block individually to capture this vibrancy of fruit. It is a tiny block and makes a very limited volume of wine available only to our members and at our Cellar Door.

Growing Season

Small bunches and intensely flavoured fruit with bright aromatics was a characteristic of the 2019 vintage, resulting in beautifully ripe and healthy fruit that we hand picked in mid January. Fruit quality was exceptionally high.


Whilst looking for diversity in shiraz within our vineyards, 9 years ago Andrew asked some his mates who owned Heritage Vineyards in Pokolbin for some buds to graft over a 30-hectare block of 50 year old Shiraz vines. We grafted 6 different clones of Shiraz onto the 50yr old rootstocks, and 9 years later we now have six different clones producing some very interesting results. The BC4 block always stood out from other blocks due to its vibrancy of fruit and soft framed tannins and is the first block of these heritage clones that we have bottled separately as a standalone wine.


We use ‘partial carbonic maceration’ which is a fermentation technique made famous from the Beaujolais region in France. It results in a complex, bright and fruit forward red wine with soft, velvety tannins. The wine was placed in a mixture of 3 and 5-year-old French oak puncheons (500 litres) for six months before bottling early to be enjoyed as a fresh, fruit driven style.

Tasting Notes

Bright purple in colour with lifted aromas of blueberries, blackberries, and violets. The palate has loads of vibrant blue and black fruits, a touch of liquorice and juicy mulberries. The tannins are soft and silky, and the finish is refreshing.

Wine Composition

pH                                                          3.45

Titratable Acidity                                  6.9g/L

Alcohol                                                  13.5%

Residual Sugar                                     <1g/L

Food Match

Steak tartare with toasted brioche and quails eggs

Cellaring Potential

10 to 15 years

Picture of 2021 Rose & Bramble Rosé

2021 Rose & Bramble Rosé


Andrew made a great Rosé, Margan Shiraz Saignée, for about 20 vintages and then got bored with it so declared he wouldn’t make it anymore. Just as the Rose’ boom hit! Lisa decided to take over the project and with our winemaker Nicole Wilson and daughter Alessa Margan they re-worked the style, renamed the wine Rose & Bramble and designed a new label. Since we launched it in 2018 it has won medals, trophies and fans. Andrew is still part of the picture – he grows the grapes – and reluctantly acknowledges that he is also a fan of the new style.


With much welcomed spring rain in 2020 we saw excellent canopy balance through all vineyards for our 2021 vintage. A mild summer allowed for excellent acid retention and a long ripening period resulting in elegant fruit character and seamless acid balance in white wines coming from 2021.


This wine is mostly sourced from our Ceres Hill Vineyard (Merlot and Barbera) with these grapes grown on the parcels of red volcanic soils. We add a small volume of Pinot Grigio grown on our Saxonvale Vineyard on the Fordwich Sill which adds texture to the palate.


Our Rosé is made using a combination of varieties and winemaking techniques. A blend of Shiraz, Merlot and Barbera picked and pressed off skins immediately to achieve a faint salmon blush and encourage floral aromatics and elegant fruits. The Pinot Grigio component Is handpicked and fermented on skins to contribute texture to the palate.


The wine has lifted berry aromas and a rose petal perfume with mulberry, strawberry, and pink grapefruit on the palate. The finish is dry and refreshing and the palate has lots of texture. An eclectic approach to winemaking has produced a dry wine packed with mouthfeel and fresh fruit.


pH                                                                  3.25

Titratable Acidity                                       7.5 g/L

Alcohol                                                         12 %

Residual Sugar                                           < 2g/L


50 years / Busby


Kangaroo steak tartare with quails’ egg and toasted brioche


2-3 years