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New owners set new direction for Crabtree Watervale Wines

Ex-wine industry executives, Richard Woods and Rasa Fabian have abandoned their city slicker life in Sydney for Watervale in the Clare Valley, South Australia where they are now the proud owners of Crabtree Watervale Wines.

Crabtree Watervale Wines was originally founded by Robert Crabtree over twenty six years ago and in that time has quietly built an enviable reputation for producing classic Clare Valley Riesling.

Investing in a small boutique winery is not for the faint-hearted but Richard and Rasa have chosen their winery carefully. Crabtree produces wines of consistent quality and integrity and pure regional character.

Richard and Rasa collectively have decades of sales and marketing experience and they plan to put this to good use to successfully raise the awareness of this boutique winery and its exceptional wines.

Their vision for Crabtree is to develop the existing label into a prestige “best of region” brand promoting its iconic Clare Riesling and Shiraz Cabernet Sauvignon while also adopting Robert Crabtree’s enthusiasm for varieties; Tempranillo and Zibbibo and other unusual Spanish white varieties. The new team also plans to develop a second Crabtree label targeting the younger wine drinker with contemporary packaging and an approachable price point.

“For both of us, the constant travel and the day to day commercial realities of busy corporate roles were taking us further away from our passion for wine — the key driving factor behind our decision to purchase Crabtree was that it offered us the opportunity to touch every aspect of the wine business,” Richard Woods said.

“The Crabtree story is all about hands-on viticulture and hand-crafted winemaking on a very tiny scale. We want Crabtree to remain an ‘estate’ brand and therefore limited in volumes. We have been followers of Crabtree for some time now and we are thrilled to take on the wines as our very own – it’s an exciting adventure,” Rasa Fabian said.

Robert Crabtree will remain as consultant winemaker and be an intricate part of the small Crabtree team ensuring the continuity of the Crabtree wine style while imparting his knowledge of the unique terroir of the Crabtree Watervale Estate Vineyard to the new owners.

For more information visit www.crabtreewines.com.au



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