At a glance…As we reach the end of vintage for 2023, the final parcels of Cabernet Sauvignon and Malbec have come through the winery for processing. They are now fermenting on skins, soon to be pressed. Our white varietals, including the hand picked Chardonnay, have finished their alcoholic fermentation and have had some lees stirring.  Our red harvests so far, which include Montepulicano, Barbera, Shiraz and Merlot are all going through ferment as well, and have been or are about to be pressed off skins.

The season and our sites…This vintage, we were truly blessed with some of the best weather conditions one could hope for. We saw some lovely long periods of warm sunny days throughout Geographe, punctuated by a handful of brief local rain events.  In the vineyard leaf plucking and removal were essential operations carried across most varieties and this has led to optimum ripening conditions.  Fruit yields across the board have been above normal, and despite the low levels of gum blossoms there has been very minimal bird pressure on the vines. I am expecting a stellar year for the whites.

Final remarks…From what we are tasting, 2023 is shaping to be an outstanding vintage for all varieties across Geographe, attributable to the excellent weather we have had building up around ripening and through to harvest.

About the Winemaker, Stuart Pierce, a self-confessed Chardonnay lover who is dedicated to making wines people want to pour another glass of, sits at the helm of Harvey River Estate and Fishbone’s winemaking.  Since joining the family’s winery in 2005, his philosophy has remained focused on minimal intervention processing, letting varieties speak for themselves, and building a range of accessible and expressive wines that celebrate everything the Geographe Wine Region has to offer.  Stuart’s travels through Europe and years working in renowned South Australian wine regions like McLaren Vale, Clare Valley and Padthaway have influenced his dedication to the holistic health of vineyards and delicate approach to winemaking. Over the past 17 years Stuart and Kevin have worked together closely, evolving the winemaking practices at Harvey River Estate. From vineyard management, to processing equipment and technology, hand-in-hand they have established and are continuing to transform the winery.