011 has been very kind to Audrey Wilkinson Vineyard. Our wines continued to win trophies and medals. Our winemaker Jeff Byrne was named Rising Star of the Year. James Agnew, our General Manager, graduated from the University of Adelaide with a Masters of Wine Business, and my family increased with the arrival of 2 new grandchildren, Lucy and Henry.
Looking Forward to Audrey’s 2012 Jeff – A Rising Star
Most pleasing of course has been the growth we have enjoyed. Primarily, this growth means to us that our wines not just win awards, but most importantly, are well received by the public.
New Faces at Audrey
Audrey Wilkinson wines are now being sold in Queensland and Victoria, and some lines are being carried nationally. Our 2007 The Lake Shiraz is also being served on Qantas International Business Class flights.
Exclusive New Releases
We have continued our efforts with China, and James and I flew to Shanghai early this year. We have made contacts with some reputable distributers and we will commit the time and effort required to ensure our entry into that market is well founded. It has been well reported that we recently acquired the Poole’s Rock, Cockfighter’s Ghost and Firestick Brands. We also purchased the Poole’s Rock winery at Pokolbin and the Cockfighter’s Ghost Vineyard at Broke. This expansion should only solidify our position in the wine industry, at a time of commercial difficulties. The Poole’s Rock and Cockfighter’s Ghost brands are especially well known and respected.
Audrey in Sydney Memorable Moments at Audrey
Unfortunately, we need to clarify exactly our role in the subsequent acquisition of what was previously the Poole’s Rock Vineyard by AGL. This property at all times remained in the ownership of the Clarke family, and was where the Clarkes resided whenever they visited the Hunter. We were not involved in the property’s sale to AGL and never communicated with AGL concerning its sale. The sale was concluded by the Executors of the late David Clarke’s Estate and AGL. I do hope this explanation clarifies matters. Finally, on behalf of all the staff at Audrey Wilkinson Vineyard and all members of my family, I wish you a very Happy Christmas and hope that 2012 treats you kindly. Brian Agnew Chairman
The legacy of Audrey Wilkinson is in everything we do.
LOOKING FORWARD TO AUDREY’S 2012
or all the frantic activity and success that has 2011 brought us, 2012 is shaping up to be even bigger and busier.
What’s more, we’re certainly not wasting time in getting active with our inaugural sponsorship of the 2012 APIA Sydney International Tennis Competition at the Sydney International Tennis Park at Homebush. Kicking off in the first week of January, this event is one of the major ATP tour events worldwide and is the key lead-in event for the 2012 Australian Open. Audrey Wilkinson was fortunate enough to become the Official Wine Sponsor of the event and we are hoping to see many of you out there in January. In particular, we are planning on running some special tasting events in the early parts of the competition and will be in touch with you all regarding special offers. We once more will be appearing as Major Winery Sponsors of Sydney Cellar Door and New South Wales Wine Festival, commencing in late February and running throughout March. This event gets bigger and bigger each year and is a great opportunity to come and say g’day to our staff and winemaker Jeff Byrne. However, the biggest thing to happen in 2012 (at least for me personally) will be the birth of my wife Jodi’s and my second child in May. I’m getting my sleep well in advance now… On behalf of the entire Agnew family and all our staff, may I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year. James Agnew General Manager
Snapshots from the Wilkinson family photo album
JEFF - A RISING STAR
’m not sure if this is a sign I’m getting older or if it’s what three daughters do to you, but this year has absolutely flown by. The vineyard is looking terrific, thanks to Carl and the boys, with a healthy canopy and what looks to be a nicely balanced crop. 2012 Vintage is looking promising… Fingers crossed! Peter, Shannon and I are currently getting the last of our 2010 Reds and our 2011 Chardonnays ready for bottling, which all look great, so I’ll be very interested to hear what you all think of them in due time. My personal highlights and the ones to look out for are the 2010 Winemakers Selection Shiraz and the 2011 Reserve Chardonnay. The winery crew and I are blown away from the success we’ve been having in the wine shows over the winter period. It started off by me winning the Hunter Valley Legends ‘Rising Star’ award, which was a big surprise, so much so, that I managed to break my trophy within 5 minutes of receiving it! Our good luck continued with two trophies at the Hunter Valley Wine Show for ‘Best 2011 Semillon’ and ‘Best 2011 White Wine’ with our 2011 The Ridge Semillon. We’ve won a few Top Gold’s with the 2006 Museum Reserve Semillon in the Royal Melbourne Show, 2009 Reserve Chardonnay & 2011 Audrey Series Semillon at the Australian Small Winemakers Show, and capped off with the National Wine Show of Australia Awards trophy for the ‘Best Semillon, Premium Classes’ for the 2011 Winemakers Selection Semillon, along with Gold medals for the 2011 The Ridge Semillon, 2006 Museum Reserve Semillon and 2010 Winemakers Selection Semillon. It feels like we have been celebrating since August! I’d like to thank you for your continued support of our wines over the past year and look forward to seeing you over the Vintage period. Have a fun & safe Christmas, Jeff Byrne Winemaker
SUMMER EDITION 2011
NEW FACES AT AUDREY Name:
Position: Cellar Hand A typical day for you includes… Work, study, wine…more wine! What is the best part of your job? The physical and mental challenges, plus tasting wine all day long. What is your favourite Audrey Wilkinson Wine? Reserve Chardonnay. What is your background? I am a gypsy - travelling around the globe, l used to work for Flight Centre, and l’m very competitive in horse riding.
Position: Assistant Cellar Door / Wine Club Manager A typical day for you includes… Work hard - Hosting our cellar door visitors and loyal Wine Club Members. Play hard - Rocking out to Kings of Leon, or teeing off at my home The Vintage. What is the best part of your job? Meeting people from all part of the world, especially those from the 15 countries l have travelled to, who are as passionate about wine as l am. What is your favourite Audrey Wilkinson Wine? The Ridge Semillon with our Reserve Malbec a close second. What is your background?
I just completed a Diploma in Viticulture for Wine Production,
A local lad, spent a decade in the Hunter Valley Wine Industry, strayed for a moment to Coal Mining but decided l wanted my soul back…and here l am, love my vino!
and soon l will be beginning a Bachelor in Wine Science at
What are you studying?
Wagga Wagga University.
Following in the footsteps of James Agnew, l’m about to begin postgraduate study in a Masters of Wine Business through the University of Adelaide.
What are you studying?
Wines words to describe you… Best consumed while still young! Not suitable for ageing! If you could have spent a day with Audrey…
Wines words to describe you…
I would have gotten my name on the deed per the property &
Tastes good…joking! Maybe fresh, vibrant, light bodied…one for fine dining.
tried to get him to have a drink of wine.
If you could have spent a day with Audrey…
Museum release of 2005 Reserve Semillon
ust in time for Summer, we are delighted to release Museum stock of our 2005 Reserve Semillon. The recipient of 2 Gold, 7 Silvers and over 10 Bronze medals, the 2005 Reserve Semillon was also just rated 97 points by James Halliday in his Top 100 wines of 2011. James Halliday describes the Semillon as ‘bright straw-green; a great example of a great vintage moving inexorably towards its full majesty; in the meantime its honeyed lemon flavours reach every corner of the mouth. A truly beautiful wine now, and will be so in the years to come. A prime example of the magic of screwcaps.’ Only a limited amount of this beautifully aged Semillon will be released, and our Wine Club members can secure a bottle (or a case!) before it goes on sale at Cellar Door, by contacting Drew in the Wine Club. The Reserve Semillon is $55 per bottle for Wine Club members, and will be $65 at Cellar Door.
l have travelled the globe following professional tennis, so l would have challenged Audrey to a game of singles…then celebrated my victory by drinking his wines! ‘The Wilkinson boys were keen tennis players and their tennis court overlooking the Oakdale vineyard was a regular meeting place on a Sunday afternoon’.
First release of Pinot Noir from Audrey Wilkinson The 2010 vintage marks our first release of Pinot Noir, sourced from one of the most Southern vineyards in Australia, the highly regarded Panorama vineyard, near Cradoc, Tasmania. Our 2010 Reserve Pinot Noir has just been released for sale in our Cellar Door, and Jeff expects it to cellar for 5-10 years. Colour:
Cherry - red with violet hues
Bouquet: Ripe cherries and strawberries Palate: Fresh red berry fruit core, a hint of savoury spice and silky tannins with great line and length The Pinot Noir is available in Cellar Door and online now, and is priced at $51 for Wine Club members and $60 in Cellar Door.
The legacy of Audrey Wilkinson is in everything we do.
AUDREY IN SYDNEY
eading up to Summer 2011 Audrey Wilkinson Vineyard were fortunate to spend the day at the picturesque Balmoral Beach in Mosman, as part of the Hunter Valley Uncorked Festival, on Sunday 6th November 2011. This event was a fantastic opportunity to enjoy the Audrey Wilkinson experience away from our home – the Cellar Door in Pokolbin. All Sydney based wine lovers were able to throw down a picnic rug, slap on the hat & sunscreen, enjoy the company of family and friends, for a relaxing day by the harbour, whilst indulging in our fine wines. On board for the day were Jeff Byrne our Winemaker, along with Georgia, Drew, Ryan, Kieran, & of course Brian & Valerie Agnew, James Agnew and the rest of the family. It was a perfect, warm spring afternoon for wine and beach, even a late thunderstorm could not dampen people’s spirits, as everyone agreed they had a marvellous time. Our Audrey Series Rose, a blend of Shiraz, Merlot and Malbec, was the most consumed wine of the day, with our always popular Moscato a close second, both excellent wines for Summer! The whole team here at Audrey Wilkinson Vineyard would like to thank all our Sydney friends who joined us at Balmoral, we can’t wait to see everyone again over the Summer at the APIA Sydney International Tennis Competition in January and in Hyde Park for the Sydney Cellar Door in February. Jeff & Drew at Hunter Valley Uncorked Balmoral
Audrey Wilkinson Vineyard Wine Club ABN 81 140 106 731 Debeyers Rd Pokolbin NSW 2320 Ph: (02) 4998 7411 – Ext.3 Fax: (02) 4998 7824 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
SUMMER EDITION 2011
Summer 2011 Newsletter from Audrey Wilkinson