xmlns:og='http://ogp.me/ns#' The Font of Noelage: Fruit of the vine and the work of human hands.

Monday, 9 June 2014

Fruit of the vine and the work of human hands.

When we were staying on the farm in Yannathan we actually spent most of the day touring around Phillip Island and the Bass Strait coastline. There were two reasons for this. Firstly Phillip Island and the Bass Strait coastline are extremely picturesque and well worth visiting. The second reason was that everyone else had gone to work or gone to school. Angela went off to her Day Care job, Jo went to her accountant’s job in Pakenham, Matthew was up very early, out working on the farm and the three children were at school.

We decided that if we arrived back at the Yannathan farm around 5-00pm there would be people home to greet us. After a great day of adventuring around the region we headed back to the homstead. On our way back we thought it would be nice to buy our hosts some wine. We saw sign saying “Winery” pointing down a side road and we followed it. I am always wary of signs pointing off the main rode that do not indicate actually how far down the road the winery or whatever is located. This was one such occasion where I should have paid more attention to my wariness.

After we had driven about 15 kilometres we came to a sign telling us the winery was 12 kilometres straight ahead. I immediately knew the wine maker was a canny soul. If his original sign had said “Winery 30 Kms” I obviously would not have been bothered. As it was, I was just about to stop and turn back when we came upon the “Winery 12 Kilometres” sign. As I said, a canny soul.

We drove the fifteen kilometres down a side road and came to quite a reasonably sized vineyard with a large brick house and a slightly smaller brick winery situated near a small car park. We entered the tasting room to be greeted by a very little Italian lady who looked at us rather nervously, as if we had come to rob the joint.

After a largely one way conversation we indicated that we would like to taste the merlot. She produced ONE glass and poured about 10 mls of merlot into it. We looked at each other and decided that asking the little Italian lady for another tasting glass would probably have her calling the police. 

We each took a small sip of the merlot. The entire contents of the glass would have constituted a small sip in a normal winery. We then asked for a taste of cab sav. The little old Italian lady poured an equally small portion of cab sav into the SAME glass from which we had just tasted the merlot. We looked at each other and thought asking for a new glass would probably cause a visit from the Riot Squad ...or the Mafia.

Despite the very small taste samples we decided to purchase a bottle of Merlot and a bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon. Navigator Lesley then asked the little old Italian lady if there were any gift bags the bottles could be placed into. The little old Italian lady muttered $2 each and then disappeared down beneath the counter. I hoped she wasn't calling the hit squad or reaching for a sub machine gun. Just then, through the window, I caught a glimpse of an older man working on some vines. Papa Don Corleone perhaps? Or maybe Marlon Brando or Robert Di Niro?

Eventually, the little old lady emerged from beneath the counter and handed over a brown paper bag which presumably contained our purchases. We said thank you. The little Italian lady said nothing and quickly disappeared through a back door. In the car we opened the paper bag and saw that she had just put the two gift bags in with the bottles. She had not placed the bottles into the gift bags. As we drove away the older gentleman working at the vines raised his head, took off his hat and gave us very cheery wave. It wasn’t the Godfather, or Brando or Di Niro. It was obviously the very canny soul who owned the place.We waved back and I hit the accelerator.

Well pleased with our purchases, we presented them to the family soon after we arrived home. We just knew that they would be happy to receive such a thoughtful gift. Later that night Angela told us in confidential tones that Matthew is a wine judge at the local show. Judges can buy any surplus bottles from the wine show for $5 each...which explains why Matthew has cases and cases of wine in a shed at their back of their house.

Now he also has a bottle of merlot and a bottle of cabernet sauvignon, with Mafia connections, to add to his very large wine cellar.


  1. That is a funny story. The whole cellar door was probably just a front for something more sinister.

  2. Glad that you liked it,Jane. Yes, she was a rather strange lady to be running the tasting room of a winery. Still,it was late in the afternoon so maybe a beautiful and sultry young Italian girl had,like Elvis,left the building.

  3. I am testing the comments!


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