Our passion is making beautiful wine grown Biodynamically to harvest the unique flavours of the Hunter Valley.

Derice and I started Macquariedale back in the early 1990’s as an escape out of the Sydney corporate world. We began our dream with an acre or so of Shiraz and Chardonnay on a property close to the Hunter River at Branxton.  From those early steps a fully Certified Organic/Biodynamic vineyard has evolved at Sweetwater Rd, Rothbury, in the Lower Hunter winegrowing region.

The vineyards now comprise of approximately 15ha which are home to outstanding Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Semillon, Chardonnay and Verdelho.  We also have a small plot of Pinot Noir which gets added to our Emma’s Bubbles and as a single variety Pinot.  Derice, our children and I have immersed ourselves in country life and live sustainably producing olives and olive oil and beef cattle, as well as growing vegetables and many varieties of fruit.

In our small sustainable winery we follow a natural winemaking passion specialising converting small parcels of grapes into the most delicious natural wines available in Australia.

We developed a Wine Club – Savour Life Club – to be able to share our wines with Members who also love beautiful wine and appreciate sustainble life.  Our wines can also be sourced through independent speciality bottleshops and fine local restaurants.

 

A SNAP SHOT OF ROSS & DERICE McDONALD

I have been an avid wine consumer for most of my life and then turned my passion into a journey of a wine business.  Understanding the toxicity of the chemicals that are used in the food chain from my training as a Chemical Engineer has been instrumental in following the sustainable path in the vineyards. Derice’s intuitive passion for truth and integrity in all things has lead the way to a more natural approach to the winemaking process.  By minimising the high levels of sulphur found in most wines, using wild yeast where possible and eliminating fining agents has lead to wines which are more reflective of our local terroir.

 

BACKGROUND ON OUR VINEYARDS & WINERY

As the organic/biodynamic approach has taken hold we have found that our adjacent neighbour in Sweetwater Rd has taken the plunge and joined into our Biodynamic Certification.  This evolution has enabled Macquariedale to expand our range of varieties and to be more self sufficent with our grape supply.  The grape varieties that we have in our vineyards were first planted in 1999 are the most successful varieties grown in this region and have a long history of producing outstanding wines in the Hunter regional style.