The story of the new owners, Brayden and Tayla. 

We purchased the Vineyard while looking for a place to call home when returning from NZ, our goal is to create a home that is self-sustainable and eco-friendly.
Tayla’s background is in Horticulture and hospitality with a passion for people and plants.

Brayden is an electrician by trade with a passion for the outdoors growing up in a four-wheel driving and camping environment. He has spent the last 4 years working up in the Pilbara and in the family business Ultimate 4wd Training.

Combined they specialise in breathwork and movement with Brayden being a breathwork coach and Tayla a yoga instructor.

Our intention is to continue Lyn and Margaret’s legacy of small-batch premium wines. All handcrafted on the property offering a rare and unique selection of wines to the region.

We went with the red-tailed black cockatoo as the logo because it’s my favourite bird and it just so happened to be the first bird, we saw on the property we arrived.

All the artwork on the new labels was done by Tayla’s nana.

The story of the previous owners, Lin and Margaret.

Lyn and Margaret Metcalf purchased the property as a paddock in 1996. It was initially acquired to build a holiday home and they, together with friends and relatives, built a house in 1999. The house was designed to take advantage of the aspect overlooking the Blackwood River which runs along about 500 meters of the northern boundary. It is supplied with underground power from the roadside pole and water was provided initially from a 90,000-litre water tank collecting water from the roof of the house. Later a garage/workshop was built, and water was collected from the roof into a second 90,000 liter tank. The two water tanks are connected.

The property has an area of just over 14 acres and Lyn and Margaret considered options to make use of the larger area. They settled on growing wine grapes for sale to wine producers. The initial planting in 2003 was 1,208 Shiraz vines grown on Schwarzmann rootstock to minimise the susceptibility to soil-related pests.

In order to gain an insight into managing vines and making wine, Lyn undertook, on a part-time basis, a BSc (Viticulture & Oenology) at Curtin University, commencing in 2000 at the Perth Campus and completing the degree in 2013 at the Margaret River campus. His regret is that he has never undertaken vintages in other wineries, particularly old-world wineries.

The vine rows are spaced at 3 meters and the vines are 2 meters apart. The cordon wire is at 1.2 meters and the trellis structure is for vertical shoot positioning with 2 sets of movable wires on 2-meter-high pine log posts. Posts are generally 8 meters apart with 4 vines to each panel. The vineyard was originally planted in 2003 with 1,208 Vitis vinifera vines (Shiraz variety) on the hybrid rootstock of V. riparia crossed with V. rupestris (Schwarzmann).

In late 2016 120 vines were grafted across to Muscat a petitgrain (brown muscat). The first wine from these grapes was produced in 2017. In late 2017 181 vines were grafted to Barbera and another 183 vines grafted to Tempranillo. They will produce the first vintage in 2019 with an expected release date of 2020/21. In late 2018 122 vines were grafted over to Durif and the first small vintage is expected in 2020.

In summary, 50% of the vineyard remains as Shiraz, 10% is Muscat a petitgrain, 15% is Barbara, 15% is Tempranillo and 10% is Durif.

The initial intent to grow grapes for sale to wineries was not a successful strategy due to the glut of grapes at the time and the small tonnage of grapes offered for sale. The strategy changed to producing a very small volume of premium wines each year.

The branding of the table wines as ‘Pump Shed’ came from the original winery shed which doubled as a shed for the irrigation gear. In 2014 the current winery shed was constructed but the fermentation of grapes is still carried out in the pump shed.

The fortified red liqueurs (ports) are branded as ‘Blackwood River’ as the winery is on the banks of the Blackwood River.