The wine industry is one of the toughest games to be in at the moment, and by the look of the current state of the market, things are not going to improve for a long time. Some days I wonder if it is all too tough but then something always happens to make me realise that all the hard work is worth it. Since starting our tiny little winery I have made many new friends and gotten back in contact with many old ones that I had lost touch with over the past years.
One of the nicest people I have had the pleasure of meeting is a gentleman by the name of Bill Biscoe. When I first met Bill, he was working at the cellar door of Penfolds at Nuriootpa. As both of my parents were employees of Penfolds for around twenty-five years each, I felt quite at home chatting to Bill whilst tasting some of the fine Penfolds range of wines.
It was during one of these visits that Bill and I began discussing our mutual admiration for Eden Valley Rieslings and to cut a long story short, we became friends. I find his unwavering encouragement to be a continual source of inspiration when times are tough. In fact, he is one of the very special people whom our latest (as yet unreleased) wine is dedicated to.
We were absolutely chuffed to have Bill, his lovely wife Jan and nine members of his family visit us last weekend for an informal afternoon of sharing bottles of wine in our lovely old stable on the occasion of Bill's 70th Birthday. My husband James had worked tirelessly to have our restored car ready to pick Bill up from his home in Angaston and bring out to our property via the scenic route past the Kaiser Stuhl Conservation Park. Bill was very happy indeed and we enjoyed being able to do something extra special for him on his birthday.
These are the moments that James and I love about having our own business - to be able to have good friends visit us and enjoy the simple things of life - the company of nice people, good food and good wines. Life is too short and we all tend to work so hard that we forget to have fun. We are definitely not your "usual" Barossa winery people - we are country people who open our home to friends and simply like to share our passion for what we do - make miniscule amounts of what we think is terrific wine. To have guests visit us and see them drive off with a smile of their face really does make it worthwhile, and that is what makes the hard times worth it.
Happy Birthday Bill!