Meet Craig Thompson from Stone Bridge Wines
Get to know Craig Thompson from Stone Bridge Wines, whose 2015 Grenache Mataro is our August Wine of the Month.
Why did you choose the Clare Valley?
We fell in love with Clare on our honeymoon - it was the variety in the landscape, from cropping paddocks and vineyards, to hills and rocky out crops. Of course, we couldn't go by the quaint boutique cellar doors. We also managed sneaky looks for property while walking past real estate offices and the quest for finding our property began.
When and why did Stone Bridge Wines begin?
We made a small start in 1997- planting a 1 acre Shiraz block with our overly helpful toddler, Lauren, who thought it was fun to pull out the vines as soon as they went in the ground!
Our Wine of the Month is your 2015 Grenache Mataro - what makes these varieties shine in the Clare Valley?
The fruit is from old bush vines planted high on a rocky slope. They get minimal love, no irrigation yet produce the most intense flavours.
In our food and wine matching calendar, we have it paired with a bocconcini, cherry tomato and basil pizza - what's your choice of food partner?
This choice is perfect! - during the warmer months of the year, we also offer wood fired pizzas and recommend the GM to enjoy with lunch.
What's your all-time favourite wine memory?
As a five-year-old, growing up in the Coonawarra - 44 gallon drums of "claret" were bottled by family and friends and much fun was had by all.
Other than your own wine, what is the wine you like to drink at home?
Old vintage ports - when I can find a drinking partner that shares the passion for these wines.
What are your top three recommendations for first-time Clare Valley visitors?
1. Riesling trail - walk, ride, jog with your furry friend.
2. The historic town of Mintaro - The iconic Martindale Hall with its maze - maybe lose the kids there - then slide into a couple of cellar doors, and your day is complete. (oh, don't forget to collect the kids!)
3. Stock up on good quality wine!
WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE…
Way to spend time off? What time off??? - Fish & chips at the beach (Wallaroo)
Holiday destination? Camping in the outback
Time of year? Vintage - the excitement of not knowing (a bit like Christmas)
Movie? Gran Torino
Restaurant? Seed Winehouse & Kitchen
Sporting team? The mighty Blues - can live in hope!