its always fun making the compost at Chard. We use the grape pressings and add in various green waste, saw dust and lime to make it all ferment properly. It gets damned hot in there as you can see by the images! The compost is turned over 3 - 4 times a year. A most unusual smell at present but in a few months its that lovely rich moist soil smell. We apply it to our vines to help build up organic matter in the soil. It's great as a spread over our gardens as well as it boosts the soil and suppresses the weeds.
We have a great relationship with another family owned premium wine producer from Australia Grant Burge wines. We have a joint venture with them to sell our wines in Australia and we hosted them recently when they held their sales conference in Queenstown. We flicked them up to the Remarkables in a chopper for a bit of Snow and Veuve Clicquot before a grand tasting in our barrel cellar followed by a delicious luncheon put on by in2Food which was amazing. A few of them were then thrown off the bungy bridge! it was a great day.
Winemaker John Wallace conducts the formal tasting in the barrel cellar
One of the most high profile and innovative chefs in the Australian Restaurant scene paid us a visit the other day. Luke Mangan has restaurants in Sydney Glass, Surfers Paradise Salt Grill, Singapore Salt and Salt & World wine bar. He is also about to open a restaurant in Melbourne. Yours truly did a Winemakers dinner at Lukes The Palace restaurant in Melbourne last year. You need to try his food, its delicious stuff, with many quirky, high end interpretations of ordinary dishes. Heres what Sir Richard Branson has to say about him ..
"Hes an Entrepreneur and you have to be more than just a chef to become a successful chef these days, and you have to be media savvy, good on television. A lot of the job is promoting yourself and promoting your business and he does that well. But in the end youre only as good as the product, so you cant be all fluff and puff, youve got to have substance behind you, and hes got substance. Hed be one of the best of his profession, and its a tough profession..."
Check him out at www.lukemangan.com
Rob and Luke