- Super cult, constantly sold out
- A pioneer of Australian new wave winemaking (but really, just making wine he loves in the way he thinks it should be)
Some call him a genius, others a rebel. Enigma. Force of nature. Legend. He calls himself a farmer.
Such is the character of Timo Mayer, who believes that wine is a product of nature that needs little to no interference, and who sees no need to bother with tasting notes, back labels or descriptions of any sort. The wines reveal themselves. "Just give 'em a go," he quips.
Hailing from Germany and a winemaking family with a history of over 400 years, wine is in Timo's blood (one would not be faulted to think wine IS his blood). Leaving these roots to settle in the Yarra Valley, he worked with the likes De Bortoli and Gembrook Hill before launching his own namesake label, to make the wines he wanted: true reflections of the region's cool climate that were interesting & a little bit funky.
Shortly into his enterprise, he started using the ancient technique of whole bunch fermentation - when stems are left on the berries - which was, at the time, hardly practised. True to form, he went full throttle with 100% whole bunches. This 'new' style stirred up excitement as well as questioning skepticism. For Timo, the answer was simple: "Stalky shit rocks!". He was right, and his efforts were instrumental in resurrecting this technique that is helping to change global perception of what Australian wine is.
No stranger to controversy, Timo continues to push boundaries and is constantly experimenting with new varietals, most notably Gamay and Nebbiolo, which are gaining much interest in the Valley.