A life in wine

After 25 years of making wine for some of Australia’s most iconic wineries, our fearless leader (and local legend!) Rob, made the decision to channel his creative energy into his own label. And so, Rob Dolan Wines was born.

Rob’s belief in creating wines of real character flows through everything we do. Our wine, therefore, is a reflection of everything we love about our home in the Yarra Valley – bold, generous and exceedingly likeable—a bit like the man himself!

Our Approach

IT TAKES A VILLAGE

Extreme drinkability is our ultimate goal. Our team of diversely skilled winemakers ensure we balance purity of fruit expression, sophisticated balance and depth of flavour. We learn from each other and we learn from each season. We are always pushing and experimenting with ways to improve our wines—particularly our hero varietals: Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon.

Discover our range of wines

Our Home

IT’S WHERE OUR HEART IS

This is where the magic happens. Our state-of-the-art wine-making facility is a hive of collaboration and experimentation. Some of the brightest talent in the region working together to craft the ripest, richest, and most generous wines. Our cellar door offers the perfect place to savour the results of these efforts.

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It all starts in
the vineyard

The Yarra Valley is home to some of the best parcels of fruit in the country—
each vineyard having been planted with varieties and clones that suit and
beautifully reflect the distinct terroir of each site.

And it is our long-standing friendships with select growers in this region that
allow us to get our hands on the highest calibre fruit possible—resulting in
the most beautiful wine.

Yarraland Vineyard, Chirnside Park

owned and operated by the D’Alosio Family | three generations of grape growers | relationship with the family spans back to 1992 | producers of super premium grapes across all varieties that feature in our Black and White Label ranges | classic and emerging varietals | grey-red sandy loam soils | easterly aspect

Gilson Vineyard, Dixons Creek

owned and operated by Linda + John Gilson | unique lower Yarra site | specialist pinot noir + chardonnay vineyard | the most northern vineyard from which we take fruit | cooling effect from shadowing of nearby hills | grey sandy loam soils over a clay base | personal relationship dating back over 25 years

Willowlake Vineyard, Gladysdale

owned by Joe Goodman + family | managed by Tim Wray | picturesque vineyard | highest quality Pinot Noir + Chardonnay | fruit sourced from this site is aimed for White Label and Single Vineyard | upper Yarra | very cool | 300m altitude | red-grey basalt soils | relationship spans back to 1992

Murrumong Vineyard, Gruyere

owned and operated by Rob + Marie Dettman + families | a unique drought proof vineyard with ample water | north-east facing with majestic views to Healesville in the east | produces Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Gris + Arneis | one of the Yarra’s most spectacular properties | also a cattle and pastoral property | relationship with the vineyard spans over 20+ years

Nenagh Park Vineyard, Yarra Glen

owned and operated by the Steve Sadlier + Family | long term relationship; Steve + Rob worked together at Yarra Ridge in the early 90’s | quality Pinot Noir + Chardonnay vineyard | located in the foothills of Christmas Hills, just above Yarra Glen | easterly sloping | grey sandy loam soils | the relationship continues to the next generation with Steve’s son Llewy being part of the winemaking team at Rob Dolan

Melba Valley Vineyard, Dixons Creek

owned and operated by Barbara + Barry Saunders | 25+ years of friendship between the Dolans and the Saunders | fantastic business mentors | northerly aspect | slopes east + north-west | shallow grey sandy loam soils over clay | growers of Shiraz, Pinot Noir, Savagnin and Merlot

Michaels Vineyard, Seville

owned and operated by the Michaels family | new kids on the block | unique Upper Yarra site | meticulous producers of high quality Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz + Pinot Noir | deep-red basalt soils | son Raph Michael is part of our winemaking team

THE ROB DOLAN FAMILY

We’ve got a pretty great bunch of people here at Rob Dolan Wines. A collection of different characters from different backgrounds but with one unified passion—our love of making and sharing great wine.

 

Our People

Winemaking Team

Rob Dolan
Winemaker + Managing Director

Years in Industry: 36

Regions worked in: Yarra Valley, Hunter Valley, Coonawarra

Previous life: Physical Education Teacher, Psychologist and Footballer

Character Quirk: Always at stage 5 of a 20 point plan, invented the terrine sandwich, favourite songs are Kokomo by The Beach Boys and Sugarman by Rodriguez

Adrian Santolin
Group Winemaker

Years in Industry: 18
Regions worked in: Yarra Valley, Sunbury, Hunter Valley, Riverina, Franciacorta (Italy) + Veneto (Italy)
Previous life: Sports Management
Character Quirk: Wants to bring back the 90’s

Kathy McBride
Winemaker

Years in Industry: 5
Regions worked in: Yarra Valley, Margaret River + Willamette Valley (Oregon, USA)
Previous life: Gymnastics Coach, Event Director and Celebrity Babysitter in five star hotels
Character Quirk: Regrets missing the 2018 Fish Creek Tea Cosy Festival, drives a car that resembles a jelly bean

Han Gao
Winemaker

Years in Industry: 10
Regions worked in: Yarra Valley, Riverland, Pipers River, Bretzfeld (Germany) + Sancere (France)
Previous life: Student – Bachelor of Science + Engineering, Master of Oenology and Viticulture
Character Quirk: One of the best Chinese exports you’ll find, has a talent for disarming people with her sharp sense of humour

Ben Dolan
Cellar / Brand Ambassador

Years in Industry: 5
Regions worked in: Yarra Valley, Hunter Valley, Central Otago (NZ) + Napa Valley (California, USA), Burgundy (France)
Previous life: Business/Sports Management Student
Character Quirk: Can kick a footy from one end of the winery to the other, enjoys annoying his mother Jude, not adverse to playing strip ping pong in the winery with his brother Max

Peta Carlson
Laboratory Technician

Years in Industry: 6
Regions worked in: Yarra Valley
Previous life: Myotherapist
Character Quirk: 50% human, 50% hot cross bun, queen of the bitmoji

Luke McNamara
Cellar / Cellar Door Sales

Years in Industry: 2
Regions worked in: Yarra Valley, Willamette Valley (Oregon, USA) + Burgundy (France)
Previous life: Fine Dining, Bartending, Golf Club Manager + Globetrotter
Character Quirk: Precise arranger of toast points, borderline OCD, has travelled to over 50 countries

Raphael Michael
Cellar

Years in Industry: 2 (paid anyway!)
Regions worked in: Yarra Valley
Previous life: Student – Major in Chemistry + Microbiology, grew up working on his family vineyard
Character Quirk: Lunch room quiz master, creator of hot sauce

Llewellyn Sadlier
Cellar

Years in Industry: 2 (paid anyway!)
Regions worked in: Yarra Valley
Previous life: Billanook College Student, grew up working on his family vineyard
Character Quirk: Suspected love child of Tim, tells great stories – minus a punchline

Sales + Marketing Team

Kate McGee
Head of Sales + Marketing

Years in Industry: 7
Regions: Yarra Valley + Coonawarra
Previous life: Commercial Real Estate
Quirks: finds her own jokes funny + holds office record for most emails sent in a single day

Sage Wang
Export Manager – China

Years in industry: 8
Regions: Represented wine companies in Yarra Valley and South Australia
Previous Life: Worked in an accounting firm
Quirks: has a wicked and unsuspecting sense of humour

Courtney Hill
Direct Sales + Wine Club Manager

Years in industry: 13
Regions: Yarra Valley
Previous Life: Student – Diploma of Viticulture & Environmental Science Degree
Quirks: pizza enthusiast, enjoys eating dinner for breakfast

Jess Faithful
National Account Manager

Years in industry: 6
Regions: Yarra Valley, Mendoza
Previous Life: wholesaler of wine, account management + labour hire
Character Quirks: lover of money magazine, Scott Pape + Aussie bulldogs

Mel Gilcrist
Cellar Door Manager

Years in industry: 5 years working in wine, 7 years exploring and blogging about wine
Regions: I worked and trained in wineries in Barossa (AU), Marlborough (NZ), Rioja (SPN), Sonoma Valley (USA).. then worked in wine in Montreal, Toronto and Sydney
Previous Life: I worked in communications in the dairy industry.. until I realised that wine is more fun than milk 😉
Character Quirks: FOMO! I rarely miss an event or gathering because I have Fear Of Missing Out!

Tayla McKay
Events + Communications Coordinator, Assistant Cellar Door Manager

Years in industry: 2.5
Regions worked in: Yarra Valley
Previous life: student, waitress + bartender
Character Quirk: has travelled to 24 countries, usually the loudest person in the room, slightly eccentric, loves a gravy and chippy sammy

Max Dolan
Cellar Door Sales

Years in industry: 3
Regions: Yarra Valley
Main gig: University Student – Project Management
Character Quirk: it once took him three days to build a flat pack cupboard, knows all the good hiding places in the cellar

Tess Dolan
Cellar Door Sales

Years in industry: 5
Regions: Yarra Valley
Main gig: Public Relations, Architecture + Interior Design
Character Quirk: can regularly be spotted with a glass of Blanc de Blanc in hand

Maddie Stafford
Cellar Door Sales

Years in industry: 3
Regions: Yarra Valley
Main gig: Physio
Character Quirk: loves to give a warm welcome to all of the customers – human and furry! strictly no physio talks over the bar..

Ally Faithful
PR + Media Relations

Years in industry: 4
Regions worked in: Yarra Valley + Otago (NZ)
Previous life: small business owner + event manager
Character Quirk: loves a good spreadsheet, playlists range from Pearl Jam to Les Miserables, only knows one joke

Finance Team

Bruce Phillips
CFO

Years in industry: 17
Regions: Yarra Valley, Nagambie, Yea Valley + Bendigo
Previous Life: everything from shearing, to driving trucks, selling photocopiers + saving lives
Character Quirks: best Grandpa in the world, cracker of Dad jokes, maker of home brew. Thinks it’s the 1980’s

Rachael Hayward
Accounts + Payroll

Years in industry: 15
Regions worked in: Yarra Valley
Previous life: various roles in Medical + Dental industries
Character Quirk: queen of cake decorating, has clocked up more km’s than the Leyland Brothers running her two boys around

Our Wine Dogs

Merlo
Operations Manager

Belongs to: The Dolans

Years at winery: 3

Quirk: Loves a dip in the fountain and drying off on customers at cellar door, doesn’t understand the definition of no

Hermes
Guardian of the Laboratory

Belongs to: Peta

Years at winery: 6

Quirk: Serial puppy biter, sits at the table like a human in the lunch room

Billie
The Matriarch

Belongs to: Tim

Years at winery: 7

Quirk: Enjoys long walks and swims at the beach; has a rich, full bodied aroma

News

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