Tony Parkinson is the originator of the Penny’s Hill brand, an enterprise he sees as ‘Proudly Australian. More so McLaren Vale’.
Proud of the McLaren Vale region, its rich landscape and colourful history, Parkinson has lived much of his life locally, his forebears first settling in Willunga as far back as 1853.
Besides a love of family, food and wine, Parky has a diverse array of interests: vintage sports and racing cars, literature and art among them.
With an affinity for branding and a long spell in advertising, it was only natural that Parky developed more than one wine brand. In addition to the flagship estate Penny’s Hill brand, The Black Chook and Thomas Goss are successful regional McLaren Vale and Adelaide Hills labels under the collective Galvanized Wine Group, the Parkinson family’s operating entity. Reflective of Parky’s motorsport connections, the group even produces wines in a joint venture with racing legend, Sir Stirling Moss.
Parky’s original vision to establish a fusion of wines, food and art at an iconic destination remains his focus. His favourite wines? “Those from our own vineyards.”
Alexia joined the GWG team in August 2013, vintage 2014 being the first Penny’s Hill production to bear the stamp of her decade-long experience in McLaren Vale.
With an abundant passion for the region; its Shiraz and Grenache especially, Alexia has combined her outstanding skills with focus on evolving the full potential of the company-owned McLaren Vale single vineyards, source of generously avoured Penny’s Hill estate-produced reds. Equally, she works with premium cool climate ‘estates of mates’ in the adjoining Adelaide Hills to craft vibrant, pure and elegant white wines.
Alexia shares with Penny’s Hill founder, Tony Parkinson, a single-minded vision to produce what these regions do best, underpinned by an emerging single vineyard approach across the nuances of terroir and site.
Vintage 2014 showcases Alexia’s handiwork emphatically. Penny’s Hill has risen to Red 5-Star James Halliday status, its wines are scoring gold medals and high-pointed reviews with regularity. In both 2016 and 2017 Penny’s Hill was awarded the ‘Best Australian Red Wine’ at the prestigious Mundus Vini competition in Germany, as well as ‘World’s Best Cabernet’ in 2016 at Concours International des Cabernets in France, all career highlights; for Alexia the winemaker and for Penny’s Hill, the brand.
After working vintages in Italy [Emilia Romagna] and France [Burgundy] and producing wines from South Australia’s key regions: Barossa Valley, Adelaide Hills, Langhorne Creek and Coonawarra, Alexia completed the AWAC course and her contribution to the greater industry includes membership of wine show committees, judging at McLaren Vale and Adelaide Hills wine shows and a growing record of medals, trophies and accolades.
Beyond the premium estate wines under the Penny’s Hill label, Alexia is responsible for the parent Galvanized Wine Group’s stable of regional brands, all driven by McLaren Vale reds and Adelaide Hills whites. A significant contributor to the Australian wine industry, Alexia’s future as a talented and passionate winemaker is assured.
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