Lindsay was previously a Physician and retired entirely from Medicine in 2001 to realise his dream of handcrafting the wine from beginning to end – growing and caring for the vines (which he has done since 1990 when the Uley property was acquired) and, since 2001, taking the grapes through the process of specialised winemaking. After having achieved his Graduate Diploma in Oenology at the University of Adelaide in 2002, he has taken control of all the wine produced under the Barratt label at our Lobethal winery.
Lindsay’s philosophy is that the vineyard is all important in the production of top quality wines and his aim is to produce each year the finest wine from the finest grapes that the season and meticulous vineyard care can provide.
Growing grapes in the Adelaide Hills is not an easy task given the weather extremes that are encountered, particularly in the Piccadilly Valley where average rainfall is well over 1,000 mm per year, fruit set is unpredictable and disease pressures are high.
Although the Adelaide Hills is viewed by many as a relatively recent winegrape growing area, it was, in fact, the first region in South Australia planted with vines. From original plantings in 1839 a wine produced from these vines was sent to Queen Victoria in 1845. With falling consumer interest in dry table wines and great difficulties in controlling fungal disease, grape growing was abandoned in the early twentieth century, but revived again in the 1970s, the foremost new plantings being those of Brian Croser destined to make famous the region and the Petaluma label.
The Adelaide Hills wine region is distinctly cool climate and lies above an altitude of 400 metres. It is geographically large with many microclimates and soil types allowing a wide range of varieties to be grown successfully. Typical cool climate varieties of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc produce some outstanding wines while in the warmer areas, Cabernet, Shiraz and Merlot are also proving exciting.
It is a challenging region in which to grow grapes and make wine, but if you knew the winemaker you’d understand that Lindsay loves a challenge.