It’s often said: “If you want to make a small fortune in the wine business, start with a large one!"
Growing grapes and making good wine is not for the faint-hearted: It needs money, know-how, hard work and perhaps most importantly, passion!
Yes, passion! At Wild Fire Wines we have bucket loads of passion that drives our determination to produce high-quality wine year after year.
It’s early morning and I am strolling through the vineyard at beautiful Iona in the Upper Yarra Valley, a feeling of pleasure and expectation surges through my veins.
Like all agricultural pursuits, growing high-quality fruit is, to a certain extent, in the lap of the Gods. Viticulture is sometimes subject to sudden climatic change and there has been plenty of that around our sunburnt land of droughts and flooding rains!
My partner John Harry and his team have won the first few battles against the odds due to:
careful pruning to ensure optimum quality fruit
vigilant irrigation management
powdery mildew management e.g. making sure that the fruiting area of each vine is clear of foliage on the Southern side where the sun exposure is at its lowest and protected on the Northern side where it’s at its highest
a consistent non-systemic spraying regime to ward off diseases such as downy and powdery mildew.
Thanks to John’s passion and ability, the vines are looking magnificent and the beginning of veraison signals the approach of what the French call ”vendange”-the harvest.
We welcome autumn, that wonderful “season of mists and mellow fruitfulness” - I can almost smell and taste the rich fruit.
My winemaker’s pulse quickens, aware of how critical these final few weeks will be.
Next, the nets will go up to avoid bird strike. From there, we are indeed in “The Lap Of The Gods”.
In a few weeks, the vineyard and winery will be abuzz with the sounds of pickers, tractors and crusher/destemmers as the vinification process gets underway.
We look forward to sharing the fruits of our labours with you!