After many years of visiting, Colin moved to Barossa from Melbourne in 2004 when he and wife Fiona purchased their Flaxman Valley vineyard. With no training beyond the knowledge he had gained from books and wine tastings, trading in his life as a builder for that of a winemaker was a real leap of faith.
Beyond his own study, Sheppard began by working a couple of vintages with Murray Street Vineyards. He also relied on his friends in the industry to lend him a hand along the way – Barossa is very much like that.
Flaxmans’ first estate releases were from the 2005 vintage and critical acclaim came quickly. The 2005 Estate Shiraz was chosen as one of the ten best in the world by Winestate magazine.
Flaxman has been consistently rated a five red star winery from James Halliday and has had many wines placed in the best of the best by variety over the years. Its range of wines has grown, but each wine is made in tiny quantities – some as small as a couple of hundred bottles.
Sheppard recently opened a cellar door at Flaxman. The monthly lunches he runs allow him to show off the skills he gained during his time on the 2014 series of MasterChef, where he finished in the top 10.
Builder, winemaker, cook and ex-motorcycle racer – there is no doubt that Colin leads a very interesting life.
You can meet Colin at the Barossa. Be Consumed event on Saturday 22 July in Melbourne.
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