Location: Ballandean, Granite Belt Wine Country, Queensland
What made you decide to become a winemaker?
“I wanted to produce something from the land having grown up on a dairy farm. Washing down the winery smells a lot better than washing down the milking shed.”
What did your introduction to winemaking look like?
“We had a boutique winery in New Zealand that we started from scratch. I studied viticulture and oenology at Lincoln University.”
Did you have a career before?
“I used to be an accountant. Had to give it up because I couldn’t stand the excitement.”
What does your day-to-day actually look like?
“My days a varied because we do everything from growing the grapes to making the wine as well as selling it.”
Do you have a favourite product, or one you are most excited about?
“Shiraz Viognier is one our most exciting wines. I love the aroma as the shiraz ferments with the viognier. I also love our CMT (Cabernet Merlot Tannat) A standard Cabernet Merlot blend is truly enhanced with the addition of Tannat. ”
Do you have a favourite tool in your trade, that you just couldn’t live/work without?
“Love our modern basket press, so much easier to press the button rather than pumping the old hydraulic one.”
What do you wish everyone knew about your wine?
“We pride ourselves in producing all our wines from grapes grown on our vineyard here in Ballandean.”
When you’re not winemaking, what do you like to do out and about on the Granite Belt?
“Not much time these days but love bushwalking.” (Note: Just Red Wines is just around the corner from Girraween National Park, so Tony is spoilt for choice!)
Where you’ll find Tony…
“You will find either me, or wife Julia (who really does most of the work!) and occasionally our son Michael in the cellar door. Michael is also a qualified winemaker and comes in to help at vintage time.”