Fiercely independent, extremely progressive and committed to looking after the land and its people, Yalumba acknowledges that the reputation of their wine is only as good as the next bottle a customer drinks.In 1847 a 37-year-old brewer called Samuel Smith left his home in Wareham, Dorset with his wife Mary and their four children. Boarding a simple three-masted barque they left Plymouth and began the long and arduous journey to Australia, arriving in Port Adelaide. From there they trecked north to Angaston where Samuel took a job as a gardener. It was arguably this brave decision to start a new life in a remote and distant land, together with the hardship that they endured, that formed the strong sense of family unity that has been the bedrock of the family business ever since. In 1849 he started the wine farm that would grow over the next 5 generations to become one of Australia’s leading wineries, with a winemaking culture that is internationally recognised and respected. To embrace the native culture, Samuel decided to adopt a local name for his farm, calling it “Yalumba” meaning “all the country around’’ in the indigenous Peramangk language.
The CooperageThe coopering of oak barrels is a proud tradition at Yalumba, with a coopering history dating back to the turn of the century. With oak playing such an important part in the winemaking process, Yalumba is one of a small group of winemakers around the world to exercise full control over the quality of oak used to age their wines. The Yalumba cooperage works closely with several French tonnellerues and American stave mills to select French, Hungarian and American staves. These staves are then stacked and left to season in their country of origin for two years before arriving at the Yalumba cooperage.
The Yalumba Nursery began in 1975 as a vision of the then Managing Director, Wyndham Hill-Smith and Chief Winemaker Peter Wall, so that they could a have greater control over grafted vine selection. At the time it was difficult to find quality grafted material, and a nursery would provide control over the planting material in the vineyards as well as an opportunity to begin selecting and importing vine material from overseas. For many years the Yalumba Nursery serviced the needs of the business and very quickly gained a reputation for quality, consistency and innovation, with Yalumba Vineyard Managers and Winemakers providing invaluable feedback and insights on clone and rootstock performance. Over more than four decades, Yalumba Nursery has developed strong relationships with leading programmes of vine, clone and rootstock selection from around the globe, and are distributors of the ENTAV-INRA® and IFG (International Fruit Genetics) variety and clone selections, and are now a leading Vine Nursery in Australia.
Yalumba & Sustainability
Sustainability is nothing new to Yalumba – it is simply a way of life. With more than 168 years of winemaking behind them, Yalumba understand the need to make the right choices for the environment, the local community and the wines. In the vineyard, Yalumba have a holistic approach to growing grapes. This is embodied in their ‘Vitis Programme’, which states a commitment to having minimal reliance on pesticides and maximum attention to environmental improvement.