I love brands that do things differently. People who aren’t afraid to break the mould and take a few risks. Those with big ideas stemming from things they are passionate about, but who don’t just dream big – they make it happen.
Duncan and Nic, our friends behind Classroom of Hope, are two such people.
And another friend who is realising his dreams and doing something outside the box is Remi Guise.
A passion for wine
Remi is extremely passionate about wine. He spends all day making it for a number of different wineries in his manager role at Naturaliste Vintners, and then spends his spare time talking about wine to anyone who will listen. He loves the whole winemaking process – from its birth on the vine to the final substance that’s poured into the glass.
Over the last couple of years, he’s developed his own wine called Tripe Iscariot. It’s been a labour of love and something he has always dreamed about since he tasted his first mouthful of wine.
The hard work on his new wine brand paid off and his first vintage was a massive success, winning awards and accolades including 95 points out of 100 from James Halliday (the most famous wine reviewer in Australia). His chardonnay also came in the top 10 Margaret River Chardonnay list. Not bad for a first vintage at all!
So where was Remi producing this tasty wine? In Margaret River, home of the wine gods.
The Margaret River wine region
Margaret River is one of the best places in Australia to produce wine. The region only creates 3% of Australia’s wines but of this it produces 20% of Australia’s premium wines.
This basically means that every drop you drink is delicious and top quality. Dave and I first holidayed down in Margaret River when we started dating, but we’ve been back a number of times since, including for our honeymoon.
Margaret River is a magical place. Tall trees line the roads, vineyards stretch over hills, kangaroos munch grass quietly in paddocks and the beaches have blinding white sand and clear blue water.
Over time, Margaret River has grown into a tourist mecca and it’s easy to see why. There are more than 250 wineries scattered throughout the area, most with cellar doors where you can stop off and sample some of the drops.
Many of these wineries have restaurants attached to them and a lot of the food is outstanding. The region also has a strong artistic pull, with many furniture shops selling beautiful handmade jarrah furniture and art galleries displaying works with strong Western Australian influences.
It’s our kind of place.
Tripe Iscariot wine
We caught up with Remi to talk about his wine and found his passion was infectious. Dave joked that Remi feels about wine how Dave feels about writing books. It’s a burning passion that Remi can’t help talk about for hours on end.
The passion shows in his wine and you can tell it’s been made with love.
The idea behind Tripe Iscariot is that it’s a wine influenced by nose to tail eating, creating a ‘berry to stalk’ concept where skins, stalks, seeds and whole-bunches of crushed fruit go in to the wine throughout the process of creation.
This helps create a full-bodied wine and a different wine making style that is all about challenging the over-purified and homogenous wines currently on the market.
This is where the ‘tripe’ part of the name comes in.
As for the ‘Iscariot’, Remi laughs and tells me that this reference to Judas, who he says is a ‘black sheep’, is a reference to himself in the wine industry, doing something different. It seems like the method of an unusual name was a good idea, as it certainly is grabbing attention.
James Halliday himself emailed Remi to ask him about the idea behind the name and this correspondence turned into a full review of Remi’s wines and garnered him the awards.
And I think I might leave it here. There’s a few cases of Tripe Iscariot in my dad’s wine cellar that I’ve been dying to sample. Cheers!
You can purchase Remi’s wine here.