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Yarra Yering founder dies

Dr Bailey Carrodus, the founder of top Australian wine estate Yarra Yering has died.

The celebrated Australian winemaker was credited as one of the driving forces in reviving winemaking in Victoria’s now celebrated Yarra Valley.

He is, however, best known for producing some of Australia’s greatest wines. Yarra Yering’s Cabernet Sauvignon blend, Red Wine No1, and Shiraz blend Red Wine No2 both feature in Langton’s classification of Australian wines.

Carrodus originally trained as a botanist specialising in plant physiology. After a stint of study in Europe, he returned to Australia, becoming a member of the Australian Commonwealth Scientific and Research Organization (CSIRO).

In 1969, Carrodus founded Yarra Yering and began planting vines. The first vintage, in 1973, was the first wine to be commercially produced in the Yarra Valley for 52 years. Other estates, including Seville, Yeringberg and Mount Mary also emerged at this time. However, wine production in the valley, east of Melbourne in Australia’s Victoria region, had started in 1838 with the arrival of the first settlers.

In the first few years of the winery, Carrodus also maintained his research for the CSIRO, producing studies including Male Scent-organ Chemicals of the Vine Moth (1978), before retiring in 1979.

By the early 1980s, Yarra Yering’s reputation had been sealed. In 1991, James Halliday wrote that he had, ‘long been a staunch and vocal supporter of Yarra Yering’s dry reds’.

‘They are wines which appeal to the heart rather than the mind,’ he added. ‘And those with a cerebral or over-technical approach may find fault – which is just as well, because there is not enough to go around.’

Carrodus produced several wines at the estate including the Dry White No1 (Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc), Dry Red No1 (Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec and Merlot) and Dry Red No2 (Shiraz and other Rhone varietals, including Viognier). For the wines which contained 100% of the same variety, the wines were simply called Sangiovese, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Merlot or Viognier.

According to the estate, Dr Bailey B Carrodus ‘ passed quietly’ at Yarra Yering on 19 September.

Written by Oliver Styles

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