A glass of Nautilus on arrival, Pinot from Pernod, Sauvignon from Indevin, a cheeky Boomtown beer on hand and for the bold, a tasting of Bragato Research Institutes (BRI) V2V wine – Combine this with the delicious food from Karaka Cuisine and you have the makings of a fantastic night!

Left to Right:Tasting table set up to taste from the research vessels; BRI Research vessel V2V ; a bottle of Pinot Noir made in the BRI research vessels

Thank you to everyone who joined us last Tuesday in celebrating BRI’s first vintage and in thanking those who helped make it happen. 18 months ago, a project team was formed, and discussions started around Research tank design. Fast forward to vintage 2019, and we put these bespoke tank designs through their paces, with 6 trial tanks. This was the culmination of hard work from a number of people and organisations, so with the completion of vintage we thought it time to ‘let our hair down’ and celebrate.

Tracy Benge (BRI Establishment Manager) & Jacqui Wood (BRI Assistant Winemaker), thanking those that helped. In clockwise order starting at the top left to right: David Gill, VinWizard; Don McKay, Structex Engineering; Peter Mann, Promann; Mid-left:Heath Stafford, Indevin; Liam Sloan, NMIT; Damian Martin and Claire Grose, Plant and Food Research; Bottom left: Andy Frost, Pernod-Ricard; Absent: Martella Electrical; Marcus Wright, Lawsons Dry Hills; Crown Sheetmetal; Hydramech; Simon Hall, JTB Architechs.

As part of the celebration we also wanted to give everyone a sneak peak into the future – with the proposed Research Winery build, and what better way to show this than with virtual reality (VR) goggles! These took you on a journey through the proposed winery, transforming it from a 2D drawing into 3D reality.

Top Left to Right: BRI CEO MJ Loza giving a speech; Claire Grose (PFR) and Will Kerner (BRI) give the VR goggles a go; Beakers set up and ready for the V2V tasting; Bottom Left to Right: Dominic Pecchenino (BRI board member), Dr Bruce Campbell (BRI board member), Dr Fang Gou (BRI) and Meagan Littlejohn (SWNZ) tasting the wines; Competition time – which wine is which?

To show everyone what we had been up to over vintage, and how the tanks functioned we put together a little tasting. This tasting wasn’t going to be straight forward however, this tasting was going to be a competition, ‘Who could correctly identify which wine came from which vessel size? ‘! And what a competition it was, there were even a few (who shall remain nameless) that tried to squeeze out a bit of inside information on the night to no avail. It did prove to be quite the challenge, as not one person picked the correct tank sizes for all 6 wines. Which was a fantastic result for us, as this indicates that via sensory analysis people could not distinguish between the tank sizes. There were a handful of people that came very close to getting them correct, so these names were put into a box and the winner drawn, who is……………………JOHN BALLINGALL. John, we have a BRI t-shirt and bottle of bubbles here waiting for you!