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9/02/2010

Bellarine grapes win over Brown Brothers

Brown Brothers has signed a contract to purchase Chardonnay grapes from Bellarine Peninsula vineyard, Leura Park Estate, with a view to using them for its flagship ‘Patricia’ range of wines.

The contract is the culmination of an extensive 12-month search for top quality cool climate Chardonnay grapes to complement fruit sourced from Brown Brothers’ high altitude vineyard at Whitlands.

Patricia is Milawa-based Brown Brothers’ highest end, premium range of wines.

Named after the company’s matriarch, the Patricia range retails between $40 and $60 per bottle and is found only in exclusive restaurants and cellars throughout Australia.

The range comprises a Pinot Noir Chardonnay Brut, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz and Noble Riesling.

Brown Brothers viticulturist Mick Griffith says the company researched a number of premium vineyards in Victoria looking for extra cool climate Chardonnay grapes.

“We target vineyard sites with natural vigour restriction, inherently low cropping levels and very well-balanced vine growth,” he said.

“We were very impressed with the Leura Park Estate vineyard and the operation as a whole … the site has excellent potential for our Patricia range.”

Leura Park Estate director David Sharp says the Brown Brothers contract was gratifying for both the vineyard and the Bellarine.

“The Bellarine has always been renowned for the quality of its Chardonnay and to be selected for consideration in the Patricia Range is serious confirmation that when it comes to fruit and wine quality, this region is up there with the best in Australia,” he said.

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