The Barratt Family

"Lindsay Barratt's wines have always been influenced by the purity and elegance that is synonymous with the Adelaide Hills, and are a testament to his skill, diligence, and physician’s sensibilities." 

How it came to be...

It all started in 1990, when a friend phoned Lindsay Barratt about a vineyard that had recently come up for sale near Summertown, in the Piccadilly Valley of the Adelaide Hills. Instantly falling in love with the property, Lindsay and his wife Carolyn were unable to act in time for the auction the following week so put the idea out of their minds. 

As luck would have it, the property didn’t sell at auction and the agent – a mutual friend – was keen to help Lindsay in his endeavour to buy what was one of the earliest planted vineyards in the region now known as the ‘Grand Cru’ of the Adelaide Hills. 

Vineyard History

The vineyard was originally planted to Chardonnay and Pinot Noir in the Spring of 1983 by then owners, the Leith family after the property had been severely damaged by the devastating Ash Wednesday bushfires. In 1988, the property was sold to Ian Wilson, previously a partner of Grant Burge who together had established the highly successful Krondorf label.  Ian had moved from the Barossa to the Hills to pursue his dream of producing Australia’s finest sparkling wine, a dream never realised because of financial difficulties and his untimely death at an early age.

Early pioneers of the Piccadilly Valley included Brian Croser who planted the first vineyard in the Valley in 1979 for the Petaluma label and Stephen George establishing the Ashton Hills label in the early 80’s. In 1992, the newly minted Barratt Wines became only the 11th wine label and one of the key founders of the Adelaide Hills region, a region which now boasts over 60 wine producers and a reputation for ultra-premium, cool-climate wine growing. 

The vineyard was renamed ‘Uley’ by Carolyn after a beloved village in the English Cotswolds from whence Carolyn’s ancestors had migrated to Australia several generations earlier.

Lindsay's Role

The proud owner of both a stunning vineyard, and equally stunning mortgage, Lindsay continued working as a physician whilst employing a vineyard manager and getting the wines made off site. Initially, daunted by the size of his mortgage, Lindsay worried that the dream might only last six months. Nevertheless, he and Carolyn were sure it would be a wonderful six months. As the months turned to years, Lindsay’s desire to trade his stethoscope for pruning shears grew. In 2002 he achieved his Graduate Diploma in Oenology at the University of Adelaide’s Waite Campus and took control of all winemaking and viticulture for Barratt Wines. 

Barratt Wines has always been a family affair employing Lindsay, his first wife Carolyn, their son Jon with his expertise in graphic design, web design and marketing and daughter Emma who assumed her mother’s role as office manager, bookkeeper and cellar door assistant through the period of Carolyn’s prolonged and ultimately fatal illness.

In recent years, Lindsay has remarried and has been helped and supported by his new wife, Wendy, a former nurse and “old flame” from an era long, long ago (they dated when she was a junior nurse and he a medical intern).

The future

Since 2022, Barratt wines have been made in partnership between Lindsay and the team of ‘The Usual Suspects Collective’, led by legendary winemaker Andrew Hardy. Andrew’s long tenure with Petaluma and Adelaide Hills gives him an unrivalled wealth of experience to work with the quality fruit the Barratt vineyard produces. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc grown at 550m above sea-level, cooled and tempered by the perfect climate showcase varietal typicity, complexity and flavour. 

For over 30 years, Lindsay's wines have been influenced by the purity and elegance that is synonymous with the Adelaide Hills and are a testament to his skill, diligence, and physician’s sensibilities.