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Monthly Report - June 2022

Shortened Days…

I am starting this ramble in a bit of a shambles – it has been such a busy month in June that I have hardly had a chance to sit down and take a moment to reflect on what has been going on.  Pruning has begun and the Chardonnay has been completed and the Merlot started – not quite as far along as I had hoped to be, but this is normal for me as so many jobs coalesce around this time.


Pruning is a great job to clear the mind.  You only need to concentrate on the vine in front of you as you cut away what you do not need and keep the amount you believe will set the most balanced crop.  It becomes a “feel” for a word, and after 15 odd years you sort of get the hang of it.  Having such a hot summer and dry growing the vines, there is a bit less growth in many of the varieties and I am having to limit the buds I am setting out so as to help the vines recover a bit.  Spring may mean a few sacks of “guano gold”, which is an organic slow release phosphate fertilizer, are to be spread about in the Merlot and Chardonnay which were the most affected varieties by the past vintage.



Pruning also helps reset your mind.  I do not have any music in my ears or podcasts trying to expand my mind – so my mind tends to do a bit of slowing down and working through what happens next.  The years in which I did not fully prune the vineyard are those that I felt rushed every month and never got settled into an “agreed” plan – even if it was just with myself.  This is a feature of today’s world, where we very rarely have time to take out of the year a distraction free period – holidays are not taken with the aim of relaxing but rather experiencing.  So, for many, forced illness through the ever catchy Covid and the new round of the flu virus has been the first time in a while in which stillness has been forced upon them.  As a “race” we are getting pretty bad at knowing ourselves and how we need to correct our overcorrections – but everyone is an expert currently and who am I to preach!



Allouran Ahoy…

The 2019 Allouran has become available to all mailing list members and will be winging it out to the retailers in the coming weeks as well.  There has been a bit of discussion about the wine, but I can assure you this version is equal if not better than almost all of our previous bottlings.  It has become a bit of a staple each week in our household as we do our rigorous “testing”, and it has proved to be excellent every time.  Sales have been steady, and one of the most pleasing aspects are the re-orders from those that were a little cautious to then step back up to the plate and take another serving.


It is very difficult to self-promote.  I too look upon producer’s guff and wonder just what they were thinking.  But, in the matter of this wine I do not really need to say much if you had a glass in front of you as you would simply know – so for those that have not had a glass I say this – it is blooming good, really really good.  Trust me, I am a geologist!


Blue Poles Road Trip

It has been such a long time coming with all of the restrictions placed on travelers here, and around Australia.  With the release of the 2020 Reserves this August I thought it was high time that Blue Poles hit the road.  We have a few events in the pipeline and one up on the website now – I’ll list the ones we have planned, so please check your busy little diaries, and see if we can meet up in your city.


  • Melbourne – Dinner 19th August 2022



Five Course meal with a large selection of Blue Poles wines, including the 2018 Deux Écus and many other older vintages secured from our storage facility.  Should be great fun as it always is on these nights in Melbourne – starts at 7pm and finishes late - numbers limited of course.  Cost $150pp and bookings available on our website.



  • Sydney – Tasting 17th August 2022


“The Alter” Bar Mille, The Rocks

A tasting of all the new releases with older wines along side for comparison and a relaxed setting where you can chat with Mark about the wines.  Event will run between 6-9pm and cheese and snacks will be provided.  Bookings need to be secured via the website – this will be up soon once details are sorted.


  • Perth – Tasting 12th August 2022

Old Bridge Cellars – North Fremantle

A tasting of all the new releases at the wonderful OBC in North Freo.  Chat with Mark after 5pm and taste through the just released wines as well as pick up some awesome breads and other treats that OBC have in abundance.


  • Perth – Dinner ~25th August 2022


Venue to be Decided

Similar to the Melbourne event with older vintages, including the 2018 Deux Écus.  Once a venue and date is fixed we will pop it up on the website – numbers will of course be limited due to limited volumes of some of the wines.


I am making a pilgrimage to Brisbane and meeting up with one of our retailers for a masterclass.  If you are a Brisbane comrade and would like to catch up on either the Saturday or Sunday evening of the 13th – 14th August 2022 please drop us a line and we will see if we can organise something less formal and enjoy a few bottles of Blue Poles plonk.



Just too busy I am afraid to get through something that will evanesce in your consciousness.  I will make a special effort in July to right all my wrongs and provide you with my version of food for thought.


Solid Start...

Rain is the underpinning support structure of the southwest of Australia.  Without it the area would shrivel up and die in the face of the relentless heat and dry of our summers, so water stored in the groundwater and river systems is a form of life blood.  Last year it just poured and poured, whereas this year we have had well above average rainfall though it has been in smaller daily aliquots as only 5 days throughout the month of June were rain free.


The numbers for this month and last year’s figures are provided below:


June 2022:        

Avg Maximum Temp          16.7°C

Daily Max recorded            19.8°C


Avg Minimum Temp           8.9°C

Daily Min recorded             2.8°C


Rainfall:                               193.0mm

The average maximum and minimum values are lower than last years, with also lower maximums and minimums.  Rainfall total for 2022 is lower than 2021, however rainfall both months are well above average for June.

June 2021:        

Avg Maximum Temp           17.3°C

Daily Max recorded             20.3°C


Avg Minimum Temp              9.2°C

Daily Min recorded                4.4°C


Rainfall:                                260.6mm


On Safari…

I do have a fortnight abroad for work in Africa at the start of July – this time in East Africa so I have fingers and toes crossed we can encounter a giraffe or equivalent for the memory to collect.  Post my return it is simply pruning, pruning and more pruning.

As always if you have any queries about what has been written or about wine in general, do not hesitate to contact us either by email, Instagram or Twitter and we will do our very best to answer any question.




Mark Gifford

Blue Poles Vineyard

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