When Jean-Jacques Morel made the decision to move his family from Paris to Burgundy, it in fact wasn’t for wine, his entry into the wine industry was merely to earn a living once he moved to the region. It was his previous influences and experience that not doubt led to him finding a true passion for viticulture, and the decision was made to follow a path of wine farming. His incredible journey in life has not only influenced his approach to his wines, but also his approach to life, as his enthusiasm and affability his hard to deny. The fact that he limits interference with his wines is but a small part in his mystique and acclaim, and spending a short amount of time it’s hard not to find his love of life infectious.
After discovering a CD of Georgian polyphonic singing in a second-hand record store in Richmond Virginia, John Wurdeman was amazed many years later to randomly enjoy a private performance of the group on the CD visiting Georgia. At the time he was studying art in Moscow, but after visiting Georgia he decided he would settle there and pursue the life of an artist. After many years preserving traditional Georgian polyphonic singing whilst based in the town of Tibaani, John was offered (bullied) into making some wine with the same ideals of preserving tradition. This was how Pheasant’s Tears was born, and since 2007 John has been involved with not only taking Georgian wine to the world, but also introducing visitors to Georgian life and culture.
Shashi Singh moved to Australia from India when she was 21 years old, to marry her husband of over 30 years Devendra. Her family in India to this day are involved with agriculture (growing sugar cane and wheat), but before she left India she completed a Master’s degree in Chemistry. After running a succesful Indian restaurant in Frankston for many years, and having visited many producers on the nearby Mornington Peninsula, Shashi and Devendra decided to purchase a vineyard in the region and carve out their own story. While studying viticulture and oenology with Charles Sturt University, Shashi’s real education came from working with Phillip Jones, the man behind cult pinot noir producer Bass Phillip. Since 2009 the Avani story has been all about syrah, and though small in production has turned a lot of heads.
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