Mount Pleasant is thrilled to announce that Chief Winemaker Adrian Sparks has been awarded the prestigious title of Winemaker of the Year at the Hunter Valley Wine Industry Gala, an annual event that celebrates individuals who have made a significant contribution to the region’s flourishing wine and tourism industry.

A highly respected and acclaimed Australian winemaker, Adrian is only the fifth person to hold the post in Mount Pleasant’s 98-year history, following in the footsteps of legendary Hunter Valley winemaker, Maurice O’Shea.

Adrian has a strong focus on quality and his dedication to crafting premium wines over the years, has resulted in many accolades, most recently the 2018 NSW Wine of the Year for the Mount Pleasant 2017 Old Paddock & Old Hill Shiraz at the NSW Wine Awards.

Adrian’s winemaking career extends across 20 vintages and he has traveled extensively through wine regions of North America and Europe, including France. These experiences have forged his appreciation of the industry and the unique interplay between art and science in the winemaking process.

The Winemaker of the Year award recognises a Hunter Valley winemaker who has achieved success on the show circuit and has made significant commitments to the promotion of not only their own wines but the Hunter Valley region. Adrian isn’t the first Mount Pleasant winemaker to take out the coveted title - prior to his tenure as Mount Pleasant’s fourth Chief Winemaker, Jim Chatto received the award in 2009.

“I’m honoured and humbled to be named Hunter Valley Winemaker of the Year. The Hunter Valley is such a remarkable place and at Mount Pleasant I have the privilege of working with exceptional vineyards that produce amazing wines that speak to their unique origins” says Adrian.

“There is a lot of creativity happening in the Hunter region which is really exciting to explore from both the perspective of a winemaker and wine lover. As one of the Hunter Valley’s pioneering wineries, Mount Pleasant has an incredible story and one that is best shared by enjoying our range of wines that capture O’Shea’s spirit of innovation.”
Mount Pleasant viticulturist Steve Ferguson was also named as a finalist in the 2019 Viticulturist of the Year category in recognition of his outstanding efforts managing Mount Pleasant’s Hunter Valley vineyards and producing quality grapes.
Photo credit: Chris Elfes