Ultimate Winery Experiences Australia

Audrey Wilkinson Welcomes New Chief Winemaker

Audrey Wilkinson is excited to introduce a new Chief Winemaker, Xanthe Hatcher.  Xanthe will take up the position of Chief Winemaker for Audrey Wilkinson as well as sister Agnew Wine brands Poole’s Rock and Cockfighters Ghost.

This well-earned promotion comes of the back of the departure of long serving winemaker, Jeff Byrne who has set out to produce wines under his own label.

“I’m deeply excited and honoured to be given this rare opportunity to take over the reins of winemaking for the Agnew family. I’m just as thankful for the mentorship of Jeff over the past few years. I have learnt a lot from him, but I am also relishing the chance to oversee the broader portfolio. ”
Xanthe Hatcher

Xanthe is a graduate of the University of Western Sydney where she graduated with a Bachelor of Viticulture and Winemaking. She commenced at Agnew Wines in 2012 and has been the winemaker for their Cockfighters Ghost label for the past two years. Xanthe has previously been nominated as a finalist in the Wine Society’s Young Winemaker of The Year Award and in 2016 was awarded the Hunter Valley Wine Industry’s Alasdair Sutherland Scholarship, allowing her to undertake the highly regarded AWRI’s Advanced Wine Assessment Course.

“Over the past few years Xanthe has established herself as one of the shining lights of winemaking in the Hunter Valley and Australia more broadly - so the decision to offer her the role of Chief Winemaker was both immediate and obvious. We have every confidence that she will seamlessly continue the great work commenced by Jeff and will ensure that Agnew Wines continues to grow. We look forward to Xanthe putting her mark on the wines we are yet to make!”
James Agnew, Agnew Wines – General Manager

Lucky visitors might be lucky enough to encounter Xanthe on Audrey Wilkinson's Behind the Scenes Winery Tour... 

Meet the winemaking team for a behind the scenes tour of the wine making process conducted in Audrey Wilkinson's working winery.

You may be lucky enough to taste wine straight from the barrel and at different stages of the winemaking process as you learn about a grape’s journey from the vine to the bottle.

Following the winery tour, make your way along the winding road to the cellar door where you will be treated to a VIP tasting of premium wines and finish the day with a cheese platter to share overlooking the magnificent view.