Peter Dillon, Chief Winemaker at Handpicked Wines (VIC)
What was your ‘watershed’ wine moment?
Visiting the Hunter Valley with my father as a boy. We visited an old chapel once used by my family, and all the stained-glass windows were motifs of different stories from the growing season, harvest and making of wine. While in no way religious, bathed in the light from these windows, this was the equivalent of my epiphany!
How would you describe your wine collection?
A mix of wine that reflects my wife’s and my own journey in winemaking, and the joy of drinking wines made by good friends. There is then a heavy Chardonnay and Pinot influence sourced from around the world, a mix of Barolo’s, plus a random mix of licorice all sorts!
What are you enjoying drinking right now?
In true Victorian style, the summer weather is providing plenty of opportunity to drink widely! One day it is a fresh 2020 Clare Riesling with fish and chips on the beach, the next a Margaret River Cab with some charcoal grilled beef.
If you could only take two things to a desert island (that has a fridge), what would they be?
A generous supply of crisp Chablis and Mornington Pinot Noir would cover the bases nicely. (Can I request an island with ample oysters and suckling pig?).
What do you think the wine industry will see more or less of in 2021?
The industry continues to rapidly evolve to keep up with Climate Change. We will see more new and varied varieties in traditional regions (lower Yarra being a great example).

Handpicked Wines is the proud sponsor of Carlos Simoes MS in the Best Sommelier of Australia 2020.