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News posted on Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Business is booming for Australian wines in China
The Australian wine industry is benefitting from the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement, with Australian bottled wines showing a strong 50.8% increase in value and 20.5% increase in volume, with the average price raising by 25.2% according to industry publications. Based on the trade agreement, China has started to reduce the import tariffs on Australian wines from this year and will eventually abolish the tariff in 2019.

What’s behind Australia’s best cellar door?
What makes an award-winning cellar door experience? In the case of the Pindarie winery in South Australia’s iconic Barossa Valley, sheep are a small but important part of the mix! Pindarie – which was named Australia’s best tourism winery at this year’s Qantas Australian Tourism Awards – is built on a 750-hectare mixed-use farm about seven kilometres west of Tanunda. Vineyards share the land with other crops and around a thousand ewes that you can watch while you sip wine on the veranda. At the right time of the year, you can even see the shearers in action.

Richie Vandenberg sees a line in the vines
IN 2005, Richard Vandenberg was appointed captain of a Hawthorn football team that had spent almost a decade in the wilderness. At the time, it was slowly emerging from an era of turmoil that stretched all the way back to a now inconceivable merger with perennial cellar dwellers Melbourne in 1996. Not blessed with freakish talent, “Richie” had something that appealed to a club that had such a horror stretch the previous year it sacked its coach mid-season.

Champagne house toasts Cup carnival to its success
As corks across Australia pop on Tuesday as we watch the race that stops a nation, Mumm champagne is celebrating the event that has helped its popularity soar. Melbourne Cup week is now the wine's biggest week in the year for champagne sales and consumption, eclipsing New Year's Eve. The brand has moved from the eighth most popular champagne in 2010 to second place behind Moet.

Top quality wines at show
A NUMBER of top quality wines were judged at the 2015 Blackwood Valley and Western Australia Boutique Wine Show in Bridgetown at the weekend. The event, now in its 13th year, is designed to recognise excellence in boutique Western Australian wineries and promote the outstanding wines produced in the Blackwood Valley Wine Region. This year the competition attracted a record 272 wines from 52 boutique wine producers who crush less than 250 tonnes within Western Australia.

Master winemaker Nick Nobilo is starting an Urban Winemakers Club for aspiring viticulturists
A new Urban Winemakers Club is starting for aspiring viticulturists around the Auckland region to turn their crop into their own personalised label. The new concept is the brainchild of Nick Nobilo, regarded as a pioneer of the modern New Zealand wine industry. "Wine making is my passion and I enjoy people who are interested in it and want to learn more," the born-and-bred nor-west resident says.

New Zealand wine industry welcomes new EU free trade talks
The New Zealand wine industry has welcomed the possibility of a free trade agreement (FTA) between New Zealand and the European Union. Talks towards establishing an FTA were announced last week in a joint statement by New Zealand prime minister John Key, European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker and European Council president Donald Tusk.

Accolade confirms a dozen redundancies
As a result of Accolade Wines carrying out a review of some of its positions and reporting lines up to 15 people have been offered redundancy. Sources have told TheShout that the changes will be mainly happening in the company's marketing department. A spokesperson for Accolade told TheShout: "Accolade Wines can confirm that some positions have been reviewed, and some reporting lines have been changed, in line with the normal course of business.

Ste. Michelle returns with ‘Raise a Glass, Fund a Scholarship’ program
Chateau Ste. Michelle continues to grow its “Raise a Glass, Fund a Scholarship” program as more than 300 restaurants in Washington State will support the annual effort for assist viticulture and enology schools throughout the Pacific Northwest wine industry. Through the first seven years, the collaboration with restaurants has allowed Chateau Ste. Michelle to raise more than $300,000 for Washington State University and other winemaking programs in the region.

Ornellaia Bianco makes case for Super Tuscan white wine
The Italian estate has launched Ornellaia Bianco - a blend of Sauvignon Blanc and Viognier - and clearly has lofty ambitions for white wines in Bolgheri. In Ornellaia Bianco, estate winemaker and director Axel Heinz has created a white wine deemed worthy of the Ornellaia name; a name built on ageworthy, red Bordeaux blends from Bolgheri in coastal Tuscany.

When $390 million worth of rare wine was set on fire
IT was a warm day in October 2005, and Mark Anderson, a 136-kilogram man carrying a bucket of petrol-soaked rags, was definitely up to no good. He walked into the massive Wines Central warehouse in Vallejo, California, where some of the world’s finest wine was stacked on pallets “40 feet (12 metres) high stretched the length of two football fields.” He lit the rags with a propane torch, dropped them along the pallets of wine and hauled out of there, running as fast as his massive frame would allow.

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