You’re an avid reader of Halliday magazine, but have you ever wondered who is behind the words you read and the images you see?
Here, we talk with Amelia Ball (editor), Casey Warrener (deputy editor) and Glenn Moffatt (art direction and design), three people involved in creating your favourite wine read.
Which article did you find most enjoyable in the August/September issue of Halliday magazine?
Amelia: I always love getting James and Campbell’s picks for our annual 50 Great Reds feature – it can feel a little like insider trading because we work so far ahead. I particularly enjoyed Campbell’s wines this time, even more so because he included one that costs a touch more than $30, despite his $30-and-under criteria. It was the Henschke Five Shillings Shiraz Mataro, which I’ve also tried and thoroughly loved, so, right or wrong, I left it in.
Casey: Sarah Gamboni’s story on Basque pintxos bars was fun (now for that trip to Spain!). I also always enjoy Campbell Mattinson’s writing on wine, and who doesn’t love a fantastic value red?
Glenn: My favourite article this issue was the San Sebastian food and wine feature ‘Basque in glory’. The imagery was incredible, the writing seductive and Spain is possibly my favourite country in the world. Not to mention the lighter Spanish reds that I enjoy.
What challenges did you face when putting this issue together?
Glenn: Every issue comes with a similar challenge and that is to ensure both visual and editorial texture from beginning to end. To engage and surprise readers with every turn of the page. Spacious layouts using panoramic vineyard locations, exceptional portrait photographs of winemakers alongside information-rich pages create the pace and texture required to engage, inform and entertain.
Amelia: There’s a always a bit of chaos behind the scenes, but this edition went strangely smoothly, which was unnerving at the time. We all even agreed on the cover. None of this happens very often.
Casey: I’ve been facilitating the ‘for and against’ page each issue, and while this type of commentary is entertaining, it can be tricky to a) find the right person to talk on a subject, and b) get them to take a strong stance. Nevertheless, it’s satisfying to see these debates come together.
How do you approach the cover image for the magazine?
Glenn: I like to surprise the reader with each cover by creating a contrast to the previous cover. Our June/July issue was the darkly evocative image used for our annual cellaring edition. The current issue went in the opposite direction with a playful white cover splashed with red wine forming the shape of a wine glass. I approach every front cover as if it was a blank canvas on an easel. My own small space for creating a piece of art!
Which red wine is a favourite of yours and why?
Casey: You rarely go wrong with good pinot! I’m also a fan of savoury, textural Italian reds.
Amelia: It changes a lot, but I’ll always say yes to pinot. It’s the lighter body and layers of red fruit, spice and earthy goodness that win me over every time.
Glenn: I enjoy lighter red wines and blends. GSM has been topping my list for a while but I’m certain that G for grenache is the secret ingredient. A chilled tempranillo in summer is also a favourite.
Is there a recent wine that you’ve enjoyed?
Amelia: I just tried the 2017 Mandala Estate Shiraz from the Yarra Valley, which is a lovely, moreish wine, and I keep coming back to the Stonier Pinot Noir too.
Glenn: A recent favourite has been the 2018 Woods Crampton Little Giant Grenache. Impressive, warmly spiced and pairs easily with most food.
Casey: I recently tried a red blend by the brothers behind Dune, who we profile in this issue. It was medium-bodied and bright, but it still had this incredible concentration of flavour. And it’s not quite wine, but I’ve been enjoying a sherry cask whisky that’s made in Scotland and matured in Burgundy.