Ross Hill at top of wine list, but true joy comes from sharing 'gift of the gods'

HARD WORK PAYS OFF: Ross Hill Wine’s Rochelle and Phil Kerney are thrilled to be nominated as a Gourmet Traveller Wine Magazine winemaker of the year finalist. Photo: CONTRIBUTED

HARD WORK PAYS OFF: Ross Hill Wine’s Rochelle and Phil Kerney are thrilled to be nominated as a Gourmet Traveller Wine Magazine winemaker of the year finalist. Photo: CONTRIBUTED

ROSS Hill Wines owners Phil and Rochelle Kerney believe their nomination as a Gourmet Traveller Wine Magazine winemaker of the year finalist is recognition for years of hard work and an ability to produce outstanding wines.

Phil (26 years) and Rochelle (nine) have been in the industry a long time and have won a swag of awards since they opened Ross Hill in 1999, but Phil believes this nomination is right up there as one of the couple’s biggest achievements.

“With 40 years between us of study and hard physical toil, we appreciate this recognition by our peers and the wine critics,” he said.

“We have produced hundreds of wines over the years, however, that have brought joy to loads of wine lovers - that is our main focus.

“Wine can be an end in itself, but it is a gift from the gods meant to be shared and enjoyed.”

Phil and Rochelle’s Ross Hill Pinnacle Chardonnay 2012 and 2013 vintages have been turning heads in the wine industry. 

They have  won acclaim from Australian wine writers James Halliday and Huon Hooke, who rated them “two of the best chardonnays on the market”.

“Our method is based on old-world techniques executed with modern quality control and precision, mainly by Rochelle, with love given equally to each of the 32 barrels over the year it takes to make,” Phil said.

“Combine that with the special fruit grown at Griffin Road and the results can be exciting for wine connoisseurs.”

The winemaker of the year award will be announced by Gourmet Traveller in October this year, and while the couple would be thrilled to win the award, they believe just being nominated is an achievement in itself.

“Any media recognition shines a light in our direction, hopefully some potential customers out there will want to come and discover and share what we love,” Phil said.

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