Rob Mack was raised in Adelaide and studied at the University of Technology in Sydney where he obtained a Business Degree. He worked for Deloitte, but the lure of wine fostered in Sydney always nagged at him. It was only in 2005, that Rob decided on the path to make wine is his true passion in life.
He had worked a vintage at Kilikanoon, in the Clare Valley, between graduation and Deloitte and then he met his wife, Louise Rhodes, his partner in life and wine. And both sharing a love for food and wine, Aphelion, was born in 2014. It was their dream to hand craft premium wines in McLaren Vale, to showcase the unique growing conditions and the variety of each parcel of fruit.
Their very first vintage was 2014. They processed 1 tonne of Grenache (which is the same Grenache vineyard where they still source most of their fruit). From that one tonne Rob made 4 different wines – a 100% whole berry fermented, 50/50 whole berry whole bunch fermented, pressings and a combination of the three.
Grenache is a versatile grape which lends itself to many winemaking techniques such as whole bunch fermentation, extended time on skins (they keep some batches on skins for up to 4 months). The aromatics of Grenache can be stunningly complex and alluring, and the medium bodied nature means they can be approachable when quite young. The combination of the region and the variety are perfect, the Mediterranean climate of the Vale suits the ripening pattern of the variety perfectly.
In 2018 Rob was awarded the prestigious Riedel YOUNG GUN OF WINE award. A remarkable honour.
Rob and Louise make a formidable team together.
Louise as Founder and one half of Aphelion Wine is responsible for business management and sales. This includes order dispatch, accounting, sales, public relations, marketing, website, social media and special event promotion, reviews, and wine shows. Louise also assists with the winemaking process as Rob’s right-hand-woman, her artworks adorn the labels and all business decision making is done together.
Rob as Founder, Director and one half of Aphelion Wine Co. is responsible for winemaking, business management and sales. This includes grower relationships, grape purchase, winemaking, bottling, packaging, customer relationships with restaurants, hotels, retail outlets, special event promotion, reviews, and wine shows.
Strategic decisions for the business are shared between them, generally over dinner, and a glass of wine.
Apart from crafting premium wines, Rob is also a keen mountain biker and enjoys travelling and spending time with his family. He is also very active on the wine judging circuit, tuning into the wine trends and exposing himself to as many wines per annum as possible.
Rob Mack was named Australia’s ‘Young Gun of Wine’ in 2018, after only a few years producing amazing wines with his wife Louise, under the name of Aphelion.
Aphelion is a leading winery on the Australia winemaking scene! Well done Rob and Louise