Who we are and what we do: VisitVineyards.com
VisitVineyards.com is Australia's leading online wine travel guide, showcasing the best of Australia's wine and food.
We provide free information, itineraries, a national wine events calendar, recommendations and reviews of cellar doors and wineries, and the best regional food and wine travel experiences across the country.
We also offer a 'passport to wine travel', a unique Membership program which is an exclusive package of unique experiences and benefits, plus discounts and offers in food and wine regions, that is absolutely placked with value and that you will not get anywhere else or with any other program.
VisitVineyards.com was created and is operated by a team of passionate wine, food and travel lovers and brings together over 30,000 different wineries, vineyards, food growers, makers, provedores, markets, accommodations, attractions and activities in Australian wine and food regions.
Our aim is to showcase them and their fabulous products to the world, and to connect you with them. We are also absolutely committed to offering you huge value and fabulous service for your money.
Meet the Team
Robyn Lewis, VisitVineyards.com Founder and CEO
Robyn has over fifteen years' experience working in agriculture, tourism and marketing, backed by extensive international experience and a background in strategic planning, environmental and project management, brand development and digital marketing, in Australia and overseas. She now lives on a farm and vineyard near Hobart, Tasmania, and spends most of her time on the internet.
Robyn's deep-seated passion for food and wine began with her early cooking efforts as a child. Dining out was a regular family activity, and at age seven she was introduced to wine by the maitre d' of Florentino's, one of the fine dining restaurants her family treated her to. And so the long food and wine path to VisitVineyards.com began.... Read her full profile here.
Charles Lewis, Financial Manager
Charles has had an interest in wine since a memorable University Biology 'wine and cheese' evening, back when Hill of Grace was considered expensive at $2 per bottle. Some wines from this era still remain in Charlie’s impressive (and now more costly) wine cellar. However, tired of paying for all his wine, and anxious to take on the Henschkes, he and some friends established his own 100% Pinot Noir vineyard in 1984 at Milford, then the largest vineyard in the Coal River Valley, Tasmania (and now among the smallest).
Managing a small vineyard has led Charles to understand first-hand the problems faced by wine growers and makers. For many, wine tourism is a necessity for survival. He has developed a keen interest in this aspect of the industry, hence the establishment with Robyn of Visit Vineyards.com. Professionally he is the only specialist rural property valuer in Southern Tasmania, and has valued (and consumed the produce of) most of the major vineyards and wineries in Tasmania. He can spot an ideal viticultural site from afar and has sourced the land for several established and emerging Tasmanian vineyards. His cellar grows unabated and his pursuit of the perfect pinot continues. Meanwhile, he has given up valuation and now works for VisitVineyards.com nearly full time as FInancial Manager, when not on the farm tending the rare breed of Southdown sheep.
Graham Brown, Web Technologist
He has also developed online search applications such as that on VisitVineyards.com, media distribution solutions, online community tools (chatrooms including audio/video, collaborative online presentation applications), rich internet application front ends for enterprise data sources, online calendars and event organisers and web based database administration tools. Graham's offline interests include karate, music composition and the history of food and feasting.
Michael Cretan, Database Consultant
Michael is a consultant in creating and managing Oracle databases with over 15 years of experience. For the past 10+ years, Mike has focused on the development and implementation of Oracle databases, using various client architectures from mainframe to client server, and in the last 8+ years, web deployment.
Mike has also acted in the capacity of Director of Information Systems for a group of Tasmanian companies, including Tasmanian Collection Services, which employ in excess of 120 staff, and he has been instrumental in guiding the strategies of these organisations during a period of rapid technological change. In between all this, and patiently answering our thousands of database and other queries, Mike finds the time to relax with his growing family on the east coast of Tasmania, renovate his house, and drink wine.
Andrew Chataway, Subscriptions Manager VisitVineyards.com and Webmaster, Winepros Archive
Andrew has a diverse background in IT/computing, which he combined with his love of wine whilst working on the legendary Winepros website from 2004-2007, and on other wine and food websites in South Australia. Andrew, a fervent 'Macintosh evangelist', is involved with online marketing affiliations, your monthly newsletter and handing your tech enquiries and login problems.
We don't know where he finds the time juggling work and raising two young boys whilst slooowly renovating his house, aided by his wife Megan and their two young boys Morris and Charlie.
Marie-Paule Leroux, Database Development
Marie-Paule Leroux was born near Nantes in Brittany, France. Her career commenced with Sauvion et Fils, a Loire Valley winery, where she became export manager. In 1991 she and her winemaker husband, Alain Rousseau, migrated to Tasmania, where she established Exquisite Flavours in Hobart, a gourmet food wholesale business. In 2001, Marie-Paule was elected Telstra Tasmanian Business Woman of the year in the Small Business Category. She sold Exquisite Flavours in 2003 to join her husband who took a position at Sirromet near Brisbane.
In 2004, she published in France a very amusing memoir of her eleven years in Tasmania: “La Grenouille dans le Billabong”, just reprinted in English (see www.tasmania-conquest.com) In 2005 Alain and Marie-Paule moved back to Tasmania. She works as an export sales consultant in the Pacific for two different wineries, for Old Bordeaux Wines in Victoria, and part time for Visit Vineyards.com. Alain is a winemaker for Hood Wines, Tasmania.
Kerry Scambler, Alliance and Promotions Manager
Kerry Scambler is a Tasmanian who came to us in mid 2008 after thirteen years in National Sales and Marketing at J.Boag & Son. She is hyper-efficient and always cheerful, and now ably assists Robyn, manages marketing liaison and promotions, Member and customer service. She also manages the VisitVineyards.com's regional wine and food programs for RACV, RACT and RACQ.
Naturally, given her work background, beer is a favourite beverage but she also has a great appreciaton for the grape and a growing interest in the many craft ciders appearing. She is a great lover of her home state (as you may have noticed from time to time!) with a keen interest in her local community.
MOG (Matter Other than Grapes)
Every vineyard has a dog, and so does VisitVineyards.com. When not chasing rabbits and digging craters, MOG guards the office and shows all visitors his profile on Winedogs.com, where he sits alongside Robert Parker's much less attractive and considerably more ferocious dog Bobby.
MOG has also featured as dog of the month in Decanter, the world's leading wine magazine.
MOG's favourite time of year is grape harvesting, when he keeps a watchful eye over grape quality and ripeness, and making sure there is no other MOG in the picking bins.
He is now accompanied by corgi-kelpie cross Bindi, who has no interest in grapes, but who has taken crater excavation to new depths.
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