Mixed Dozen

by Charles Gent

1 876631 75 9

C format $30.00

Publication date: November 2003




The men and the stories behind the wine labels

The first British settlers of Australia showed immense enthusiasm for growing grapes and making wine, beginning with the cuttings carried by the First Fleet in 1788. During the Napoleonic War, French prisoners of war were brought to Sydney to teach the locals about viticulture. The first book on the subject was published in 1825 and a wine industry quickly grew up, despite the efforts of the growing temperance movement and an insect called the phylloxera to stop it.

Here are the stories of great wine enthusiasts from James Busby to Len Evans, and of men whose names are familiar from wine bottle labels, such as George Wyndham, Dr Henry Lindeman, Dr Christopher Penfold, Thomas Hardy, David Wynn, and Wolf Blass. Assisted by wine makers of genius such as Max Schubert and Brian Croser, and authors and makers like Max Lake and James Halliday, they created an industry that has become a part of Australia’s history.

Today, Australian wine-makers are teaching the French a thing or two and Australian wine is moving successfully into the American market. Here are the stories of the heroes of the past 200 years who made these triumphs possible.

Cartoons by Patrick Cook.



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