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About Thistle Hill
In 1975, sustainable farming enthusiasts David and Lesley Robertson came across a 110-acre block on what they comically described as “a hill full of thistles”, nestled in a fertile valley known as Erudgere, just outside Mudgee. Picking up clues from the established and highly productive vineyard right next door (the Erudgere Vineyard which recently merged with Thistle Hill), David soon discovered the property was perfect for growing grapes, boasting well-drained, rich basalt soils over thick veins of limestone.
The couple moved in the following year, with the aim of planting the area’s first organic vineyard. They started literally from the ground up: ploughing organic matter into the soil, planting tracts of native trees and shrubs, creating natural waterways and encouraging helpful bird and insect life into carefully balanced ecosystems.
Cabernet Sauvignon grapes were planted in 1977, followed by Chardonnay, Pinot and Riesling vines, all from root stock carefully selected from the Riverina region of New South Wales. Thistle Hill’s first commercial vintage was made using a hand-operated wooden basket press and individually bottled in a small, dirt-floor winery that the Robertsons built themselves. All four varietals were quickly met with widespread acclaim, consistently winning gold and silver.
Today, Thistle Hill is one of Australia's best-loved wineries and most well known organic brands. The vineyard was first certified Grade-A organic by the National Association for Sustainable Agriculture Australia (NASAA) in 1993 and has met the certification's stringent testing criteria ever since, making it one of the oldest organic wine labels in Australia and the world.
History in the making
After 35 years in the business, Thistle Hill's original owners have passed the torch to a young family, Rob and Mary Loughan who live on the vineyard with their two 7 year old twin boys. The family originally owned the neighbouring vineyard, Erudgere, and have a passion for great wines. The merger of the two vineyards means guaranteed access to some of the best quality grapes in the Central Ranges region. The wines from Erudgere are rich and full-bodied, and for many years, their grapes were selected for Rosemount Estate's famous and flagship Mountain Blue range, one of Australia's most respected wines. Visit the newly combined cellar door for an experience in great wine making from quality vines.
Last Updated (Sunday, 12 February 2012 18:19)