The first Homeless Grapes Project started in 2015 with one little Facebook post. Jock Harvey, from Chalk Hill Wines, posted that he had a surplus block of grapes and anyone was welcome to them if they made a donation to charity. We saw an opportunity: why not make a cheeky little shiraz instead and send 100% of the profits to charity? We contacted Jock, and the rest - as they say in the biz - took loads of hard work but was totally worth it.
Three hours later, we had pickers, tractors, a winemaker, barrels, bottles and labels all lined up. The whole community came together to make the wine a reality, and the Homeless Grapes Project was born.
The Homeless Grapes - Victoria 2018
The Homeless Grapes Project is defined by generosity; from the growers, winemakers, volunteers, bottlers, printers and supporters, this project would not be possible without the support of our beautiful community who have donated their talent, goods and services to help raise money for those who need it most.
In 2018 we picked grapes in the Yarra Valley, Coonawarra and McLaren Vale - the idea being that each pick supports a local homelessness issue.
Every cent from this Yarra Valley Chardonnay goest to St Mary’s House of Welcome, an amazing frontline charity who provide hot food, accomodation, support and essential services to those experiencing homelessness in Melbourne.
Though we have the absolute honour of selling the finished product, we can’t take responsibility for this vino. This is a community effort for community gain, from the winemakers doing the hard yards to our designer working on the label, to the volunteer mofos out picking grapes. Everyone played or will play a part in this and we give thanks to you all.
But extra special thanks go to all the makers and growers of the Yarra Valley, including: Steve Webber and Leanne De Bortoli of De Bortoli Wines, who helped pick and shape these grapes into wine from start to finish; Clare Halloran (TarraWarra Estate) and Helmut Konecsny (Rochford Wines), who generously donated some of their precious chardonnay grapes for the cause. Not to mention our brilliant packaging, printing and logistics partners in Portavin, CCL Label, Visy and Bambra. Also...
Yeah, you. You who jumped out of bed without much notice (hello fickle nature, we’re looking at you) and headed to a vineyard to spend some time with these homeless grapes. You who bought a case of a previous vintage and helped us do some good. You who shared that wine with friends and spread the message of Homeless Grapes. You, who upon reading this, will buy a case of this vintage and help make a difference. You, beautiful mofo, who is out there contributing to a better world.
The wine in the glass speaks volumes, even if you didn’t know the backstory. The coming together of grapes from Tarrawarra, De Bortoli and Rochford creates a harmonious whole that seems to have amplified the best parts of each. It’s fine, fleshy and minerally all at once. Its steely backbone is wrapped up in honeydew melon, grapefruit pith and almond croissant flavours. It weaves a long, captivating story on your palate, with effortless generosity that echoes the intent of the Homeless Grapes project. As if you already didn’t feel good about buying this wine.
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It’s cool, we get it, you want to know absolutely everything about this wine. Well here you go, go nuts.
- Yarra Valley
- Alcohol by Vol.
- Bottle Vol
- Blend Info
- Serving Temp.
With a history spanning over 175 years, there's no doubt that Yarra Valley is one of Australia's most celebrated cool climate wine regions. Victoria's first wine growing district and today home to over 80 wineries specialising in Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Shiraz and some of our country's best sparkling wines. With stunning hillside, lush greenery, vast space and an enviable climate - it's no wonder that medals, trophies and coveted points are plentiful here.
The rules are there ain’t no rules, but here are some foods we think will work pretty well with this wine...
Potato roesti with smoked salmon
- 800g royal blue potatoes, peeled
- 1/3 cup (80ml) olive oil
- 1/2-1 tsp horseradish cream, or to taste
- 100g spreadable cream cheese
- 1 bunch rocket, leaves torn
- 200g sliced smoked salmon
- 1 tbs finely chopped chives
- Coarsely grate potatoes into a sieve placed over a bowl.
- Season potatoes to taste with salt and pepper. Using your hands, squeeze out any excess moisture from grated potatoes.
- Heat 1 tbs oil in a heavy-based frying pan over medium heat. Working in batches and adding more oil when needed, add heaped tablespoonfuls of potato mixture to pan, flattening to form 8cm rounds. Cook roesti for 1 1/2 minutes each side or until crisp and golden.
- Drain roesti on paper towels. Place horseradish cream and cream cheese in a bowl and stir until smooth. Divide roesti among plates. Top with rocket, smoked salmon and a spoonful of cream cheese mixture. Scatter with chives then season to taste. Serve immediately.
The wines we remember are about the moments. The people, the places. That’s life. Here are some ideas...