In honor of Women's History Month, we spoke with some of the top women winemakers working in the industry today to learn more about them, their craft, and the wines they produce. Stay tuned throughout the month of March as we update this women in wine series with more interviews and be sure to check out our wine list featuring wineries who have women winemakers on staff.
Virignia is widely respected winemaker in Australia, and an authority on Margaret River. She joined Vasse Felix to lead their winemaking in 2006.
Wine.com: What’s one thing people wouldn’t know or expect about being a winemaker?
Virginia Willcock: Harvest commitment. It’s the ultimate sacrifice during vintage to understand and focus on every patch of grapes. You have to make life decisions based around commitment to the job and the wine you are making.
W: How would you describe your approach to winemaking? What makes that unique?
VW: Every winemaker is different. But I believe there is a balance between being a technical winemaker and an intuitive winemaker. I find myself being more on the intuitive side. Every response to vintage is unique and I believe that in order to make a true wine, we need to know when to do less and allow nature to work.
W: In two words, how would you describe the magic of Vasse Felix wine?
VW: Elegant power.
W: What is one piece of advice you would give other women working their way up in the wine industry?
VW: You need to love it with a passion to give the commitment required. Be sure you want to do it, because the grapes rule your life for up to 3 months every year. Spending time with friends or family can be put on hold in order to devote the time necessary. The grapes ripen based on environmental influences not ours.
W: What’s your can’t-fail food and wine pairing?
VW: Fatty salami and a fine Cabernet
W: If we were to take a cellar dive into your personal wine collection, what would we find?
VW: Cabernet, Chardonnay, Nebbiolo, Nerello Mascalese, Riesling, Pinot Noir
Thank you, Virginia!