Irrewarra is one of Australia’s most brilliant winemakers pushing himself further, delving into new territory and giving voice to another captivating landscape. The name is an Aboriginal term meaning “long spear throw” - and it’s partly the thrill of the hunt that drew Nick Farr to this frontier in the heart of Western District farming country, approximately 150 kilometres south-west of Melbourne. The slope is a mixture of grey sandy clay loams at the south end, to dark brown loams with fragments of buckshot and quartz gravels towards the north - all with underlying brown to yellow clays. Overall the soils remain very moist throughout the year, lending an attractive, spicy, damp-earth depth to these exceptional wines.
The Farr family has presented a resolute and faithful rendering of the vineyards of Geelong since 1978. That’s when Gary Farr started out as winemaker at Bannockburn. His intimate nurturing of the land on his doorstep was informed by a dozen vintages at Domaine Dujac in Burgundy, stints in the USA at Cristom, Oregon and Calera, California, and sojourns to areas such as the Shiraz and Viognier heartland of the Rhône Valley. Prescient and purposeful planting of the By Farr vineyards began in 1994 and the wines that ensued quickly established a formidable reputation. Nick Farr took charge of the range in 2009, and his comment that his father is 90% of his winemaking inspiration is borne out by the attitude, depth of character and understated finesse of the wines. But there’s no doubt that Nick is taking these wines forward with great conviction and instinct. His triumph in the troublesome 2011 vintage and the creation of a breathtaking set of 2012 releases show beyond doubt that he’s one of this country’s most talented winemakers.
Farr Rising is already right up there when it comes to quality and excitement. The wines could barely boast better pedigree, with Nick Farr at the helm and impeccable fruit sources. These range from Pinot and Chardonnay grapes from the Farrs' own 2002 plantings to 35-year-old vines from 10km further down the Moorabool valley. Made in an earlier-drinking style than some of the By Farr range, the Farr Rising wines often go toe-to-toe with their illustrious label-mates. They represent some of the best-value terroir-driven wines available.