In this photo there are some people you might recognise at our cellar door in Dunsborough. From the left: Bill Parsons, Doc McDermott, Ros Happ, Ross Day, Jeremy Happ, Erl Happ, Chris Byatt, Brian Jones, Liz Jennings, Hayley Mayne, Fabian Haegele, Bec Lisle, Dawn Missen. Absent are the winemaking team and the Three Hills vineyard team. Missing: Mark Warren, Chloe Simon, Keith Warrick, Liz Disley, Trevor and Jen Keeley, Louise Day, John Hogan, Sue Higgins. Andy and Eline Coventry, Beth Coventry and Eddie Phillips.
Awards and Reviews
You should be aware that wine styles vary and come in and out of fashion, and it’s up to you to find the style that suits. Nobody can do that for you. Our winemaker Mark Warren likes to enter wines in wine shows – he is very competitive. And gregarious, so he goes there to meet his fellow winemakers and the wine trade.
If a particular wine has been well reviewed by some pundit we might tell you in the wine notes that can be accessed on the order page. Or we might not. Frankly, we prefer our customer reviews.
We don’t bother to send our sweet wines to writers for review. Most of our dry wines don’t get sent for review either.
When we win a gong of some sort we normally make some apologetic noises in our newsletter. So, sign up. But, keeping a tally is a bit of a pain. You should be aware that some 55% of wines that are entered in shows receive an award. And with so many shows to choose from persistence pays off. Unless it’s a gold award or a trophy we don’t take a lot of notice. Entering shows is expensive and time consuming and feedback is negligible. So we normally enter Melbourne, Perth, Mount Barker and Margaret River. Some producers enter five Capital City wine shows. Many producers don’t enter a single show and there is a comprehensive literature supporting the observation that ratings are inconsistent.
We don’t show medals on labels. But we do display wine show trophies at our cellar door.
According to James Halliday, Happs is ‘Five Star’ in the top 3% of Australian wineries. James does not review the same wine in succeeding editions regardless of whether we are actually selling it at the time or not. And we frequently make enough of a particular wine to last two or more years. It’s just not practical for us to make upwards of thirty five wines every year. So, in any particular edition of James’ Australian Wine Companion you will see just a sample of our wines that James has reviewed favourably.