Malcolm and Colin Campbell are the fourth generation of the Campbell family to make wine in Rutherglen in north-east Victoria since great-great grandfather John established the estate in 1870. Malcolm is the viticulturist and Colin the winemaker, and together they are responsible for a range of uniquely Australian fortifieds and world-class table wines. They are also part of the prestigious 'First Families of Australia' group, a collection of families who are renowned for the excellence of their wines and the heritage that they honour.
The Campbells' approach is to marry tradition and innovation and though they have a history as long as your arm they have embraced the latest techniques when it improves the wine. They have introduced modern technology in the temperature controlled winery (such as rotary fermenters and the latest thermally controlled vats which allowed them to pioneer white table wines in the area) and in the 65 hectares of vineyards where improved canopy management and new trellising systems have seen continuous enhancement of fruit quality.
With a block of trial vines in which more than 40 new varieties can be put through their paces before being assessed with a view to their wine producing future there is certainly no sitting on their considerable laurels.
The Bobbie Burns vineyard was one of the first planted on the estate, in 1870, and it is from there that the fruit for the Bobbie Burns Durif is grown. Durif, also known as petite sirah, is particularly suited to the heat of this part of Victoria and in the right hands turns out dark wines of dense fruit and spice. The Campbells are quite clearly the right hands.