From Gnadenfrei to Marananga

  Gnadenfrei ‘free by the grace of god’ Marananga ‘by my own two hands’   The Barossa Valley is one of Australia’s oldest and most celebrated wine regions, enjoying a history as rich and complex as its...

The Exciseman

    The Exciseman Whisky Bar, Singapore exciseman (British) noun plural -men A government official who collects excises and enforces the laws concerning them For over two hundred and fifty years, from the early 18th century through to the...

Faces to the Rain

FACES TO THE RAIN Where are the poets in a world gone mad, The sonnets, stanzas and quatrains? Words are sharpest from the edge, Where is the caesura and refrain- In our desperation and despair? Aught but screams and cries...

Yarra Rising

  The Rising Vineyard sits in the Christmas Hills between St. Andrews and Yarra Glen, so named for the emancipated convict David Christmas; who managed to get himself lost in the region during the year...

Modena Anima

The Po River basin is the food bowl of Italy, in its heart is the region of Emilia Romagna and it is here you will find ‘Il cibo di re e angeli’, (the food...

Natural History part 5. ‘The One Straw Revolution’ On Man and Nature

Nature never deceives us; it is we who deceive ourselves. -Jean-Jacques Rousseau  Masanobu Fukuoka (1913 –2008) was a Japanese farmer and philosopher, he was a trained microbiologist and agricultural scientist and after completing his education he...

Natural History Part 4. ‘Voltaire’s Bastards’ On Reason and Nature

I noted with interest that a special 20th anniversary edition of John Ralston Saul’s jeremiad, ‘Voltaire’s Bastards’ had been released, a book that provoked in me a great deal of thought when I first...

Natural History Part 3. The Opimian Falernian, One Wine to Rule Them All

  “In vino veritas, (in wine, truth)” ― Pliny the Elder As we approached the end of the second millennium, huge growth in wine production in some countries saw a sort of industrialization of grape growing,...