Two years after the devastation of the Grampians bushfires, Grampians Estatecelebrates a new beginning with the release of the Black Sunday Friends Shiraz Collection.
These wines are made possible by the generosity of eight cool climate local and regional wineries who donated fruit to continue the winemaking tradition of Grampians Estate.
This made a 2006 vintage a reality after fire wiped out 90 per cent of the Grampians Estate vineyard during the Grampians bushfire.
Their generosity, together with Graphix Labels who provided both the wonderful label design and production, and many others, is a reminder of the true spirit which exists within the industry.
The wineries involved were: Boggy Creek (King Valley), Brokenwood (Beechworth vineyard), Cobaw Ridge (Macedon), Dakis Vineyard (Grampians), Dalwhinnie (Pyrenees), Garden Gully (Grampians), Henty Estate (Henty), and Shays Flat (Pyrenees).
Grampians Estate is a 5th generation family business
The Friends Shiraz Collection in many ways is a tribute to all who assisted during and after the Grampians fires across the entire region.
Special mention to Sunraysia Nursery, Graphix Labels, Mooraduc Tatyoon CFAs, Dunkeld CC, Moyston-Willaura FNC, Old Carey FC, Garden Gully team, Grampians Estate family, and individuals from all walks of life.
The recovery effort involved hundreds of people, mostly volunteers, and continued for months on end. It still continues today at a personal level.
When one considers that 50,000 hectares of farmland, 60,000 sheep and half of the National Park were consumed in the best part of one day, the rebuilding will take some time to complete.
The wines themselves are wonderful examples of cool climate shiraz. Each parcel of wine was fermented separately and blended prior to bottling.
Wine from each winery is represented in each wine the proportions, however,vary to produce three different and unique wines.
The 2006 Black Sunday Friends Shiraz was bottled in August 07, allowing it to be entered in five wine shows (one gold andfour silver medals), one judge commenting: It has fruit depth intensity and vibrancy with balance, its a wine ready to drink now.
Fiery night. The blazing view down Halls Gaps main street.
The 2006 Black Sunday Friends Reserve Shiraz was only bottled in February 2008. It has amazing intensity, spiciness and richness, a wine that will definitely reward cellaring.
The 2008 Black Sunday Friends Sparkling Shiraz is still on lees and will be available in July 2008.
The labels designed by the Graphix team are a work of art and reflect the magnitude of the event. The three wines each feature a different picture of the fire on the front label, and three different pictures of volunteers on the back label.
Black Sunday will forever be remembered by those who witnessed the day or its aftermath. Like Ash Wednesday and Black Friday before it, communities rise to the occasion, recovering, rebuilding and looking to the future.
The Black Sunday Shiraz Collection encompasses all thatwith a little help from our friends.
Sarah Guthrie says Grampians Estate wine is available by mail order or from Garden Gully cellar Door, 1477 Western Highway, Great western....heaps of parking space for caravans, and trailers open 11am till 4pm everyday. Just off the highway...can't miss it!
Thermopylae the Guthrie family property is within a short distance from Yarram Park, this property was the location of the iconic painting Land of the Golden Fleece painted by Sir Arthur Streeton. As a child, Sarah grew up on this property with her father who was the Property Manager. The artists name and image features throughout the various vintages and is a strong reminder of our Australian heritage and land.
The address is Tom and Sarah Guthrie Grampians Estate 366 Mafeking Rd. Willaura.Vic.3379.
Ph: 03 5354 6245
Fax: 03 5354 6257
Some of the Grape Escape crowd
GoSee attended the 2008 Grampians Grape Escape heldon May 3rd and 4th in Halls Gap, in the Grampians Region of Victoria.
The annual event in Halls Gap treated some 6,000 visitors to a gastronomic getaway this year in perfect weather.
With more than 80 gourmet vendors, live music and childrens entertainment all set against the spectacular backdrop of the Grampians National Park, it was a sensational weekend.
Espresso Mobile Caf Operator Russell Colyer and his team again provided quality fresh espresso coffee to festival visitors and trade vendors.
This was the third year we have attended and it's getting better every year. I am passionate about providing quality coffee and customer service and it is a privilege to be included with such quality local product Russell, a local to the area told GoSee.
A wide variety of other vendors included:
Barkley Lavendar Rose Farm, Bellellen Grampians OrganicsBrambuck Bush Tucker, European pastries, Grampians Estate Wines, Kalaporee Olives, Maldon Yabbie Farm, Meredith Dairy Cheese products, Namaskaar Indian Restaurant, Proffertjes, Red Duck Beers, Seppelts Winery, Spice Bazzar, Timboon Fine Icecream and Waffleworx Belgian waffles
Espresso Mobile Caf Owner Russell Colyer chats over a double shot latte with Celebrity Chef Ed Halmagyi from better Homes Gardens
This year celebrity chef Fast Eddy Ed Halmagyi from Better Homes and Gardens demonstrated his swift culinary skills with cooking demonstrations throughout both days of the wine and food festival.
Pictured right -Russell and Fast Eddy chat about the Intricacies of making a great coffee during a well earned break.
Later in the afternoon, Eddy went on to Melbourne to attend TV Weeks 50th Logie Awards.
Better Homes Gardens won the logie for Most Popular Lifestyle program. It was presented by Steve Jacobs Kate Ritchie and was accepted by Joanna Griggs with Better Homes Gardens team members Dr Harry, Rob, Jason Ed Halmagyi.
A highlight of the weekend was a tasting of the special Grampians Estate Black Sunday Friends Shiraz 2006.the label tells it all:
Black Sunday 22nd January 2006 the day bushfires wreaked havoc across the Grampians region. The massive fires consumed everything in its path, half the National Park50,000 hectares of farmland, 60,000 sheep, 2 lives. No-one could remember anything like it.
Friends, new and old appeared from the gloom. Their generosity produced this wine. Our heartfelt thanks go to these wonderful people.
Editor's Note: We include pictures from the manyGoSee features on the Grampians fires. At the height of the firesGoSee carried up to three updates a day. The pictures were taken by our GoSee team, which includes twocaravan park ownersand friends from the Grampians Region.
We apologise that many of the pictures do not display in the current GoSee Multi-View Big Picture formate which our designers have now perfected for GoSeeAustralia and our sister site GoSee New Zealand.
GoSee is always changing and in early 2006 Multi-View was an idea.
Even so we think the terror of the great Grampians fires and the heroism of those who faced themcomes through even in the small formate.
Here are some related Grampians Information Articles from the GoSee files:
Parkgate Resort Halls Gap faces the flames. pic. Samantha Magill
Hills ablaze Halls Gap. pic. Samantha Magill
GoSeeAustralia hauls our office through fire damaged country
Lakeside Caravan Park is a great survivor
Epicormic shoots bursts through the bushfire black 14.02.06
Ralphys takeaway gives thanks
Water bomber copter Elvis attacks