Tropical winery industry leader
TONY and Trudie Woodall didn’t move to Shannonvale with the intention of becoming tropical fruit wine experts.
Now, however, they have been included on a register of Australian tropical expertise, recognised as leading lights in their industry.
“I suppose we’re as expert as it gets,” Tony said.
“We’ve been making wines from tropical fruit for 17 years, and developed commercial standards eight years ago.
“You could say we’re writing the book on commercial drystyle fruit wines.”
Every wine the Woodalls have ever entered in a wine show has come home with an award, due in part to the assistance of a commercial grape wine judge who acts as their consultant.
“We have to develop wines to his standard, or he won’t work for us,” Tony said.
Tony said he hoped the AusTropEx register would allow others to tap into a wide range of knowledge.
“We’ve done a bit of consulting over the years,” he said.
“Most of the growers we’ve helped have been amateurs, but we wouldn’t hesitate to put people onto our consultant if they wanted to get serious.”
The Woodalls started collecting tropical fruit trees soon after arriving in the region, gradually accumulating 70 different types, and realised they needed to do something with the fruit.
“We didn’t start out with the intention of making wine,” Tony said.
Once they started, however, they became interested in the process and determined to make fruit wine, which is normally associated with a sickly-sweet taste.
“Our motto is ’ No, it’s not sweet and sticky’,” Tony said.
“Making wine from tropical fruits is actually easier than using grapes.
“Grapes are so sweet, you have to pick them when they’re half-ripe.
“Mango, on the other hand, has about one-quarter the sugar content of grapes.
“We have to add sugar to get the alcohol content up to 12-13 per cent.”
The AusTropEx register, which lists tropical experts in 10 fields including agriculture, food, health and energy, is available on www.austropex. com.au.
Tropical expertise: Shannonvale Winery owner Tony Woodall