Old world winemaking approach

Tahbilk Winery was established in 1860 and continues to pay homage to the tradition of old-world winemaking, a celebration of terroir.  Our winemaking approach, in combination with our unique climate and world class soils, means our wines truly pay homage to the place they are grown, the people who made them and five generations of family heritage and craft.


Winemaking Tradition

When we refer to the old-world ways of making wine we are harking back to traditional methods which reach beyond the Roman empire.  The people of Tahbilk have been making wine for over 160 years and across five generations of family, much longer than many of the old-world countries typically associated with old-world making of wine.


Our wines are made so they retain their iconic quality and have a style that cannot be matched in the new world way of making wine.  A light touch approach which focuses on the importance of terroir. The terroir relates to ensuring the specific qualities of the land our grapes are grown is enriched and shines through in all of our wines.



White Winemaking




Most old-world wines are soft, elegant and tannic. Tahbilk Estate wines approaches making wine like some of the greatest winemaking regions in the world such as Bordeaux, Burgundy and the Rhone.


Founded on these principals by one of the most influential winemakers in Tahbilk’s history, Francois Coueslant, who in 1877 arrived at Tahbilk as a practical vigneron from France, but a gentleman with progressive ideas. His winemaking techniques still used today and what led Tahbilk Estate into its first Golden Age. 


Cornerstone to the old-world winemaking philosophy is fermentation and maturation in oak barrel; rather than stainless steel.


Our Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon continue to be fermented in original open oak vats (over 155 years old), followed by maturation is similarly aged large French barrels prior to being bottled. Smaller French and American oak barrels being used late in the winemaking before the wines are blended back together.  A craft we have honed over 160 years.


If the face of changing winemaking styles and trends, our winemaking has remained the way it has for years, continuing to deliver wines of true provenance and reflective of each vintage.

Home of Marsanne

There are not many wineries in the world who can claim a wine as their own however synonymous with Tahbilk is Marsanne.  Marsanne is one of the world’s rarest grape varietals, and Tahbilk holds the largest single holding of the varietal in the world.

Originally from Hermitage AOC in France’s norther Rhone wine region, Marsanne was bought to Australia and established at St Hubert’s Vineyard in Victoria’s Yarra Valley.  Tahbilk sourced cuttings from there in 1860, and although those vines didn’t survive, Tahbilk was still able to plant Marsanne in 1927 at the request of the newly appointed winemaker, Eric Stevens Purbrick.  We call this block the 1927 Vines, and it is these Marsanne vines that are amongst the oldest in the world.

From the Estate’s earliest days, and certainly with the Purbrick family at the help, Marsanne continues to be one of our bedrock varietals. 


Couple this with a wine show pedigree that includes over 55 Trophies, 187 Gold, 251 Silver and 472 Bronze medals, an ever-growing, encyclopaedic number of wine press plaudits and a lot of love and you can well understand the excitement around each new vintage release.


When young you can expect our Marsanne to be dry and vibrant with a mineral tanginess which develops further richness and complexity with age.  A truly beautiful piece of fruit which our winemaking team has learnt to finesse.