The genesis of Poole's Rock Group dates back to 1988 when businessman David Clarke established his first vineyard in Broke in the Hunter Valley. David's long-held interest in wine stems partly from the fact that his father was the accountant of one of Australia's iconic wine figures - Maurice O'Shea.
The original vineyard estate produces the flagship Poole’s Rock Chardonnay, a benchmark for the company’s prestige portfolio, which has since evolved to include the trophy-winning Poole’s Rock Semillon and Poole’s Rock Shiraz. Indeed no one else makes dry Semillon like they do in the Hunter Valley.
With the advantage of some of the world’s oldest vines and a unique climate (warm but cloudy) which allows the grapes to reach full flavour ripeness at only 11-12% potential alcohol, these wines are austere and closed in their youth, yet over the course of 1-2 decades they develop astonishingly. Complex flavours of toast and butter belie the wines’ 100% stainless steel fermentation and ageing, and nowhere is the ‘waxy’ and ‘lanolin’ character of the Semillon grape more obviously evidenced. A truly world-class Semillon and unique wine style.
In 1994 the company acquired the Cockfighter’s Ghost vineyard and Cockfighter’s Ghost Cottage at the foot of the Brokenback Range, and in 2002 acquired the historic Glen Elgin Estate, now known as the Post Office Block, and site of the popular Cellar Door and winery.
David Clarke passed away in April 2011 after a long and brave fight with cancer. At his instigation, discussions with Agnew family, Hunter Valley neighbours and owners of the near-by Audrey Wilkinson Vineyard, commenced in late 2010 culminating in their purchase of the business in August 2011. The wines are now made by the talented Usher Tinkler (pictured here in the vineyard with Berrys' Wine Education Specialist Anne McHale MW).