The Vincast with Mark Walpole from Fighting Gully Road

Mark Walpole has been one of the most influential people in the alternative variety scene in Australia, particularly Italian varieties, mostly stemming from his time working for the Brown Family, the Pizzini family, and then the Greenstone project in Heathcote. He has consulted to many growers and producers over the years, and been heavily involved with the importation of new varieties and better clones as well. His focus now is on his own vineyard and winery in Beechworth, Fighting Gully Road.

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Mark Walpole from Fighting Gully Road

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The Vincast with Nick James-Martin from Wines of Merritt

Nick James-Martin had a long and varied career in wine before ending up in the Margaret River in 2017, freshly relocated with his family from Adelaide. Due to unforeseen circumstances Nick found himself with an opportunity to launch his own project, which he did under the Wines of Merritt banner. In only a few vintages he and his wife Sarah have gained a cult following and much acclaim for their wines that break the mould of one of Australia’s most prestigious (but also conservative) wine regions. He joins me on this episode to talk about his journey and influences that led to making wine his way.

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Nick James-Martin from Wines of Merritt

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The Vincast with Marco Tinessa from Ognostro

Marco Tinessa was a wine enthusiast for many years before he decided to start making his own wine. Though he was based in Milan working in the finance industry, he originally hailed from the Campania region in Italy’s south, and he was determined to produce something from his area. Until recently this wasn’t easy, initially relying on the assistance of Frank Cornelissen on Etna, then making his wines in a cellar under a restaurant in Milan. He has now quit his ‘day job’ and relocated back to Campania where he is better able to manage the vineyards and work in his own winery.

Marco Tinessa from Ognostro

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The Wine Show 7th June 2020 – Kelly Pearson, Daniel Airoldi, Michael Zaccaria & Nick James-Martin

Recently I was co-host for The Wine Show on Inner FM 96.5 with Phil Smith from The Wine Depository for the second time, sitting in at home via Zoom along with most of the guests. Kelly Pearson, winemaker at Mt Moriac on the Surf Coast, and founder of Ladygarden Wines was our first guest. Daniel Airoldi from Airoldi Fine Wines reported on this years Bordeaux En Primeur campaign. Michael Zaccaria of Quelvino Imports talked about his new initiative to promote small producers and merchants through Wines To You. Nick James-Martin from Wines of Merritt talked about his relocating to the Margaret River and turning chaos into opportunity.

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Phil Smith

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The Vincast – James Scarcebrook with Marc Malouf from Wine Worth Writing About

For the 150th release of The Vincast I thought it might be interesting for the listeners to find out more about the host of the podcast, James Scarcebrook aka The Intrepid Wino from Vino Intrepido. Recently I caught up with Marc Malouf from Wine Worth Writing About via Zoom, as he was keen to interview me. With his permission this is the audio from that interview, touching on my own background, influences and my recent exploits in winemaking. I hope you enjoy it, and feel free to get in touch if you have any questions yourself!

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James Scarcebrook

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The Vincast with Jane Lopes author of Vignette

After a very long hiatus, I’m thrilled to finally be able to release this interview with Jane Lopes recorded last year, who at the time was the sommelier at Attica restaurant in Melbourne. In the time since we recorded this chat, Jane’s book Vignette has been released to much acclaim, but she has returned to the United States of America with her husband Jon. It was fantastic to listen back to our conversation about her journey, particularly having read her book and knowing more about her.

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Jane Lopes

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Let’s Taste – Freeman Rosso 2017 & Robusta 2013

Based in the Hilltops region of New South Wales, Freeman Vineyards has been on my radar for some time, mostly because they are working with Italian varieties that you don’t see very much planted in Australia. When they reached out with the offer of some samples I was thrilled, and I really appreciated the opportunity. Let me know what you think in the comments below!

Wines tasted;
Freeman Rosso 2017 – RRP $20.00
Freeman Robusta 2013 – RRP $70.00

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January 15, 2019 · 12:31 pm

Let’s Taste – Opawa Sauvignon Blanc 2018 and Pinot Gris, Rosé & Pinot Noir 2017

Opawa are a range of wines made by Nautilus Estate in the Marlborough region of New Zealand. Meaning ‘Smoky River’ in Maori, the ‘Opawa’ vineyard is 25 hectares planted on stony soil, ripening earlier and producing an ‘intensely fruity and fragrant style of wine’, blended with fruit purchased from other vineyards. On this edition of Let’s Taste I am tasting the entire range currently available, let me know your thoughts in the comments below!

Wines tasted;
Opawa Sauvignon Blanc 2018 – RRP $23.00
Opawa Pinot Gris 2017 – RRP $24.00
Opawa Rosé 2017 – RRP $24.00
Opawa Pinot Noir 2017 – RRP $27.00
Website – https://www.opawawine.com

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January 15, 2019 · 9:21 am

Sir Ian Botham Wines – Tasting 27/11/2018

In case you missed it, I’ve just released my interview with Sir Ian Botham for The Vincast, which I recorded in late November 2018 just before I had the chance to taste the following wines from the inaugural release of Ian Botham Wines. Here are my first impressions, I was generally very impressed with them, particularly at the entry level, all of excellent quality for the price.

Botham All Rounder Chardonnay 2018 – RRP $14.00
Peach cobbler, lemon butter. Very clean and fresh, fairly broad and simple but decent depth, freshness disappears a bit, more melon on the palate than stone or citrus fruits.

76 Series Margaret River Chardonnay 2018 – RRP $17.99
Very delicate flint and smoke, lemon pith and some pepper notes, opens up to a bit more grassy on the nose with some stone fruits on the back. Denser and finer on the palate, focus without the flesh, a bit more bite.

Sir Ian Adelaide Hills Chardonnay 2017 – RRP $100.00
Oak stands out right off the back, smoky floral note. Even denser, sweeter vanilla notes, good fleshy but fine fruit notes, very elegant but fuller.

All Rounder Shiraz 2018 – RRP $14.00
Really exuberant and powerful blue fruits, a little bit of sweet salty meat, some dried florals and spice. Dried red fruits, soft but fairly fresh, looks like a blend. Dry finish.

81 Series Barossa Shiraz 2017 – RRP $17.99
Meaty tomato almost Bolognese sauce, kind of leafy, a bit of basil. Warm generous good balance of dried fruit and slightly savoury elements, decent freshness and no apparent oak.

Sir Ian Barossa Valley Single Vineyard Shiraz 2013 – RRP $100.00
Super intense, not showing any age at all. Still showing a think fog of oak at first, extremely dense and dark on the nose, vanilla and blueberries. It’s there but the oak is dominating, hard to see where it may be in five years but doesn’t look like it’s losing anything, certainly appeals to a palate, not mine though. I get it.

80 Series Coonawarra Cabernet 2016 – RRP $17.99
Unmistakable Coonawarra Cabernet, eucalyptus and cigar leaf, a bit soapy and minty. Decent focus, good balance, soft yet not broad or bruised tannins, good tannins.

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The Vincast with Sir Ian Botham

For cricketing fans the name Ian Botham should be very familiar as one of the most famous all-rounders in English test cricket history. Not as many know that Sir Ian has long been a passionate wine lover, having taken advantage of both the proximity of European regions from England, and a touring schedule that took him to many new world wine producing countries. I was invited late 2018 to a tasting of his recently released range of wines from a number of premium Australian regions, and I was honoured to have the opportunity to sit down with him to find out more about his love of wine and enthusiasm for crafting his own.

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Sir Ian Botham

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