Mount Burrumboot Estate was born when the wine bug bit Andrew and Cathy Branson
In 1999 they planted vines on the Home Block of the Branson family farm 'Donore', located on the slopes of Mount Burrumboot, on the Mount Camel Range above Colbinabbin. Originally the vineyard was just another diversification of an already diverse farming enterprise of cereals, prime lambs and irrigated clover hay. The first wine was made in 2001 by contract, and 2002 saw the first vintage wine made by Cathy in the machinery shed, surrounded by headers and tractors. The original primitive winemaking operation was eventually refurbished into a new 50 tonne winery in August 2002.
The Mount Burrumboot Estate winemaking philosophy is simple. As farmers, the winemakers allow themselves to be guided by nature, and intervene as little as possible in the vineyard and the winery, and only when necessary. Good wine is made in the vineyard, and winemaker Cathy Branson ensures that the wine is carefully and gently handled during the vinification process. Careful use of oak allows complex characters to develop, seamlessly blending with the massive black fruit characters, allowing the vines and the fruit to be fully expressed in the final wine.
Mount Burrumboot use traditional methods and gentle processing, ensuring that harsh characters do not end up in the bottle. An old fashion basket press is utilized to obtain the wine from the must, and finish fermentation in a selection of French and American oak barriques. From then on, the wine is racked several times, and topped with minimal additions. Red wines remain unfiltered to maintain the integrity and full fruit characters, and to tell the story of the vines, the terroir, and the vineyard.
Mount Burrumboot Estate sits at the northern end of Australia's newest and most feted Shiraz region Heathcote
Here the Heathcote's terra rossa reds are redefining Australian Shiraz both at home and internationally, and the land has become keenly sought after by large and small wine companies, with premium prices being paid.
Regarded at home and internationally as one of the finest Shiraz producing regions in Australia, Heathcote is producing outstanding, highly sought-after wine and fruit. Low yielding vines produce Shiraz that is distinctively purple/black, with inky dark berry fruits, complex and intense, with formidable depth and length, that has become the hallmark of this new region. Indeed, some Heathcote wines have already achieved icon status - Jasper Hill, and Wild Duck Creek in particular.
The secret appears to be the terroir of the area. The red Cambrian soils here are deep and ancient, 500 million years old, with seams of jasper running through, and bluestone at the northern end of the Mount Camel Range. It is this soil, with its ability to hold water, but drain well, coupled with a warm, dry climate, that consistently produces super premium wines.
As you travel the Heathcote-Rochester Road along the Mount Camel Range, the number of new vineyards is staggering
And the wine made from the fruit of the vines is staggering too.
To date, Mount Burrumboot's wines have won medals at every show entered, including a gold for their 2002 Shiraz at the San Francisco International Wine Show 2004.
Mount Burrumboot Estate carries a commitment to producing high quality, ultra-premium wines, with minimal intervention from low yielding vines in one of the best red wine regions in Australia. Current production is only 600 cases a year, with a proportion of that being for cellar door sales, some wholesale, and the rest (around 50%) for export.