Mr Ullinger is still in hospital but his son Paul says that while the initial diagnosis wasn’t good, his father had shown some positive signs.
“Since the stroke, about eight or nine weeks ago, he has had moments where he rallies and looks like he is getting much stronger, but then falls back a bit,” he says.
“At this stage we expect he will be in hospital for some time; he may not be able to return home.”
Paul Ullinger says that while his father is unwell the family will take over managerial responsibility for the winery.
“The family are all shareholders of the property and should anything happen I’d say it would more than likely remain a part of the family.”
• • •
Watershed Premium Wines has a new distributor working in Germany following a chance meeting at the Margaret River winery’s cellar door recently.
Watershed Wines managing director Geoff Barrett says the addition to the winery’s export portfolio came about when a visitor called into the cellar door and, upon tasting their fare, decided to take some of Watershed’s wine back to Germany.
Mr Barrett says the German company acting for Watershed, Sandfire Wines, will take about 300 cases in the first year.
“In the past 12 months we’ve been able to establish distribution in 11 countries, which is pretty good,” he says.
“We’re thrilled with this one as Germany is a difficult market to get into. That’s the luck involved in a cellar door operation.”
• • •
It seems there have been some rumours circulating about the future of Margaret River’s Moss Wood, in particular regarding the ownership of the vineyard.
“It’s funny because occasionally we’ll get approached by people interested in buying but we haven’t had anyone in recently,” he says.
“We’ve even had people ask how much we sold for and when. But Clare and I are very happy here and we don’t have any plans to move.”
• • •
Ferngrove Vineyards Estate vice-president sales and marketing Paul Avery has relocated to the US to support growth and brand presence in the US market.
The Great Southern winery has also appointed red+white as its national distributor, to coincide with the push for further growth in the international wine market.
• • •
Regular readers of Voyager Estate’s Magnum magazine may have noticed a recent update in their leading producers list.
Issue 11 of the Voyager Estate magazine had the leading producers list topped by none other than Voyager, then followed by industry stalwarts Leeuwin Estate, Cape Mentelle, Devil’s Lair, Cullen, Moss Wood, Howard Park and Brookland Valley. The more recent Issue 12 includes a much more comprehensive list with the inclusion of Vasse Felix (6) and Gralyn Estate (8).
We’re not sure how the folk at Voyager missed Vasse Felix.
By all accounts Vasse had been in the business for about 10 years before Voyager’s inception.
• • •
Leeuwin Estate has secured Sting for a third performance in February, with proceeds going to relief efforts for those affected by the Asian tsunami disaster.
Sting originally had planned two shows. The benefit concert will be held on February 10, and if the public’s response to the first two concerts are any indication, tickets won’t last long.