Parker favourite Torbreck winery is back in business after winning financial backing from fast-food businessman Jack Cowin.

The cult Australian winery was forced into receivership in October when winemaker David Powell’s marriage to co-owner Christine Powell collapsed.

Following his appointment as manager by receivers KPMG, David Powell continued to run the winery as normal but admitted, ‘lots of people have been nervous over the last six months’.

There has been no interest in the Torbreck brand from other wineries – despite Robert Parker declaring David Powell ‘a genius’ and referring to the Torbreck wines as ‘some of the most exciting on planet earth’.

Powell eventually uncovered several single investors in a bid to raise the AU$2m (€1.12m) needed to buy out Christine – before clinching the deal with Cowin.

‘Jack Cowin hadn’t heard of Torbreck when we first approached him but was informed by financial advisors that not only was it a good investment but also a cult winery and potentially blue chip wine brand,’ Powell said.

He added the upcoming 2003 vintage would be smaller than usual, the fruit quality will be ‘superb’ and the flavours ‘intense.’

Written by Josie Butchart3 February 2003