International Cool Climate Wine Show 2023
With 10+ years of experience in Hospitality and bottle shop retail, Courtney felt she was ready to take the next step in the wine industry. She was a steward at The Melbourne Royal Wine Show and the Langton’s Yarra Valley Wine Show in 2022. This showed her a glimpse into the wine judging arena and since then, she has had a strong desire to contribute her insights.
Courtney has a substantial understanding of many international and Australian wine styles and regions, and is relishing the opportunity to further expand upon her knowledge and palate.
Courtney has also completed WSET level 2 and 3 with Distinction.
Iryna has a passion for wine and continuously strives to broaden her knowledge in this area, having done extensive traveling worldwide to gain greater experience and to enhance the science aspect of winemaking. This allowed Iryna to work with wines from different varieties made in a wide range of styles and different wine regions. Working with Sukholymansky and Odessa Black in Ukraine, specializing in different clones of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir in Sonoma, and Italian varieties in King Valley.
While working as a sommelier, Iryan had the opportunity to visit the Italian wineries in Trento, Veneto, Tuscany, and Umbria, doing vintages in different countries throughout.
She also traveled to New Zealand, where is tasted and visited wineries in Marlborough, North Canterbury, Central Otago & Nelson.
In the USA, Iryna has traveled extensively in Sonoma & Napa County, Alexander Valley, Mendocino, and Santa Cruz.
Iryna has had a wide-ranging education, covering many aspects of the wine, food and tourism industries, which includes gaining her Certificate WSET Level 3 and a Diploma from Flinders University, both a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree from the National University of Food Technologies (Kyiv, Ukraine) as well as certificates from the University of Melbourne, Nelson Marlborough Institute of Technology and has successfully completed other training courses along the way.
Her employment history within the wine and food sphere includes many roles both withing Australia, the USA, New Zealand and the Ukraine. She currently works at King Vally Wines, here in Victoria, as a Quality Manager and Winemaker
Jim has always been passionate about visiting wine regions enhancing and contextualising what he had studied during the WSET Diploma and learning from the winemakers themselves.
In 2019, Jim visited some of the large estates in Rioja and Bordeaux. Then in Burgundy tasting in the cellars of Bruno Clair, Dujac, Domaine des Lambrays, Comte George de Vogue, Bruno Clavelier, Anne Gros, Benjamin Leroux, Domaine des Croix, Jean-Marc Roulot, Blain-Gagnard and Vincent Dauvissat. This was followed by Stephane Tissot in Jura and Jean Foillard, Domaine Chapel, Marcel Lapierre and Chateau Thivin in Beaujolais.
In 2022, Jim travelled to Barolo and visited Margherita Otto, Bartolo Mascarello, Gheddo, Vietti, Giacomo Fenocchio, Paolo Scavino and G. D. Vajra. Tasting with vignerons in the Northern Rhone (Stephane Ogier, Rene Rostaing, Pierre Gonon, Franck Balthazar and Auguste Clape), the Rheingau (Keller) and Mosel (Heymann-Lowenstein, Knebel and Willi Schaefer).
These experiences enabled him to develop a better understanding of the effect of terroir, viticulture, winemaking and vintage on wines. They also enhanced his appreciation of regional and varietal characters.
Now working at Atlas Vinifera, Jim is exposed to a rotating list of 12 wines by the glass from around the world changing weekly. Abby Mortet, one of the owners, is on the wine judging panel for the Young Gun of Wines and he is continuing leaning from Abby.