Vineyard & Winery
633 Carapooee Rd
Carapooee Vic 3478
633 Carapooee Rd
Carapooee Vic 3478

T: 61 3 5496 3220
F: 61 3 8610 1621



TASTINGS: by Ben Edwards, The Age Saturday June 14 2003

We make big reds!" says Roger Milner of Berrys Bridge in the Pyrenees, two-and-a-half hours' drive north-west of Melbourne. He and partner Jane Holt don't bother messing around with the white stuff when the demand for the gutsy reds is so big. They can also plainly see that the region is set up for growing red grapes - shiraz and cabernet sauvignon - for which the Pyrenees is famous.

They bought their 22 hectare property near the town of St Arnaud in 1975 and divided their time between the city and the country until they settled down full-time in the Pyrenees in1998. The land has developed into a six hectare vineyard producing wines of exceptional richness and density.

The planting of the first vines in 1990 was based on a lifestyle choice, like so many others before them.

Today they are part of a formidable partnership with Ian Macdonald, who bought one-third of the business in 1998 and is now in charge of the marketing and sales of Berrys Bridge brand.

Jane and Roger look after the vineyard and the winery and the three are only interested in producing wine from fruit off their own estate.

"This is what gets my clock ticking," Macdonald says. "So few wines in this country are actually estate-grown and produced."

Their passion is obvious, especially for the small quantity of merlot grapes they are growing, wit the result being a wine of great power and one of the few merlots in the country that exhibits complexity and interest.

The crimson and purple-hued 2001 shiraz exhibits aromas of blackberries, mint, spice and a hint of earth. The medium to full-bodied palate is full of dark fruits, spice, leather, well-handled oak and chewy tannins, yet for all this has a lightness that speaks of terrific balance. This wine needs time
and should start to reach maturity in three years, wit another 10 years of enjoyment to follow.

The slightly lighter-coloured 2001 cabernet sauvignon shows appealing aromas of violets, cassis, cedar and just the merest hint of mint and oak. The palate is layered with flavours of black olives, dark fruits, minerals and fine grained tannins. The flavour is very persistent and the structure and balance remarkable. These wines are worth their price on cellaring potential alone. Keep for up to 10 years or maybe longer.