BlackJack was the name given to an American sailor who, during the Gold Rush era of the 1850's jumped ship and found his way to the Castlemaine Goldfields. A road adjacent to BlackJack Vineyard still bears his name.
Perhaps following a similar dream but in search of liquid gold, Ian McKenzie and Ken Pollock and their families planted their first vines on an old apple orchard at Harcourt in 1988. Further planting in 1989 completed the initial four hectare vineyard development of mainly shiraz and cabernet sauvignon with a small area of merlot as well.
More shiraz was planted in 1998 on what has become known as Block 6. Part of this block is on Castlemaine sandstone gravel rather than the very old granitic soils on the rest of the property. The different soil profile and different clonal material gives Block 6 Shiraz what we see as more Rhone - like characters.
BlackJack Vineyards released its first wine in November 1994 and in the short period since has established an enviable reputation for producing fine and generous red wine. BlackJack has twice won the trophy for best shiraz at the Royal Melbourne Wine Show in 1996 for it's 1994 shiraz, and in 2004 for its 2002 Block 6 Shiraz. The latter wine also won the Premier's Gold Trophy for the best Victorian wine of the show.
It is the BlackJack philosophy to produce consistently high-quality red wines that reflect the vineyard and vintage variations. We hope you enjoy them.
Beautiful in every season, BlackJack Vineyards offers a friendly welcome, a chance to taste some excellent full-bodied reds and talk about the joys and despairs of grape growing and winemaking in historic Central Victoria.