The athletes are two Melbourne sommeliers, Matt Brooke and Liam O'Brien, who met working at Circa the Prince, and were inspired to endeavour to resuscitate a half-acre block of pinot noir in the Macedon Ranges planted in 2000, but thereafter left untouched, unpruned and half dead. They left the first crop for the birds in '08; picked a few grapes in '09; and were exhilarated to harvest half a tonne of pinot in both '10 and '11. In '12 they took over the lease of 0.6ha of chardonnay in Romsey, which involved leaving the pinot block while they built careers and families. Today they lease the chardonnay block in Romsey, and buy pinot from growers in the Macedon region. I crossed paths with both Matt and Liam at Circa, and with Liam at the Len Evans Tutorial. So it comes as no surprise to find that they are persevering with their venture, and that the quality of the wines is as good as it is. Mind you, there's plenty of room to grow without losing the fun of the chase.
Liam OBrien, Alister Timms, Jo Marsh
19 Soudan Road, West Footscray, Vic 3012
0410 273 905