Address: 125 Larcombes Rd, Modewarre
Phone: 03 5266 2147

Review by: Brown Magpie Wines

 Brown Magpie Wines is nestled into the hinterland of the Otway Ranges. In many ways, this has influenced our philosophy. We feel we are very much part of the local area. Our grapes are wholly estate grown. Our wine is handcrafted on site. It only leaves the vineyard in the bottle. All of our grapes are hand-picked and processed within hours of harvesting.

Our grapes for our Pinot Gris, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay are picked in the cool of the morning and whole bunch pressed. Carefully selected aromatic yeasts are added to enhance delicacy and varietal fruit integrity in the wine. Slow, temperature-controlled, stainless steel fermentation is augmented by some barrel fermentation to enrich the palate of aromatic whites.

The pinot noir and shiraz are hand plunged in open 1000 litre vats, pressed at optimum extraction and aged in quality French oak barrels. Up to 30 per cent are new, from the finest cooperages of France. These include: Garronaise, Meyrieux, Derieux, Quintessence, Saury and Damy. We also use Hungarian barrels from Demptos and Kadar. Even our old barrels are carefully rebuilt. We individually select and import specific oak styles and coopers to suit our winemaking technique.

Wine making is a natural process and we are merely providing the right environment for the wine to ferment and develop. As guardians of the winemaking magic, we encourage the activity of desirable microbes and use clean, science-based practices to eliminate undesirables.

We work as a team; Shane, Loretta and Samantha Breheny, Robert Steel, Dale Cooper and Daniel Greene, supported by our local workers – Ian, John and Roger. Each person adds a unique skill to our enterprise.

Brown Magpie believes that wine quality begins in the vineyard. Pruning, shoot thinning and disease control is carefully monitored to ensure the highest standard of canopy management and hence quality of fruit. We believe that the wine industry is an aesthetic one and therefore the vineyard must be beautiful, but also a clean and manicured vineyard is the most important way to fight diseases.