- Our Story
Our story began in 1996 on a hillside at Cherry Gardens, when the Sexton family replanted our strawberry farm to Shiraz. The vineyard is nestled in a warm pocket of the Adelaide Hills, on the corner of Main & Cherry Gardens roads. It’s not a bad view up there, sitting high on an east facing slope overlooking St Vincent’s Gulf.
Michael Sexton is the vigneron and winemaker for Main & Cherry. He tended to the vines as a teenager and went on to graduate from Oenology at Adelaide University in 2003. Mike spent time staining his hands red with good company at big and small wineries in McLaren Vale and various parts of the world. Chasing his dream of crafting his own wine, Main & Cherry was launched in 2010 from our original Shiraz vineyard.
Things have quickly grown from there. Mike met Kirstie, and in 2014 Audrey arrived at the same time as the spring planting of our bushvine Grenache and Mourvèdre at Cherry Gardens. In 2016 we purchased a beautiful vineyard planted with Shiraz and Grenache on Piggott Range road, just north of the Clarendon township, and Thomas joined our family soon after (as a 2017 vintage baby). We also team up with other grape growing families throughout the Adelaide Hills and McLaren Vale, selecting the best grape varieties grown in the right places on the right soils.
We tend to make our wines slowly without rushing them. Our red ferments are all open fermented in small vessels, so that we can gently hand plunge them and maintain cool temperatures for fruit vibrancy. Our red ferments often stay on skins for several weeks before basket pressing, while our whites remain on lees for months to build texture and complexity.
We believe in nurturing the soil the best way we can. We try to consistently build humus levels, biomass and vitality of our soils. On our home blocks at Cherry Gardens and Clarendon, we can best describe our way of managing our vineyards as biological farming, rather than adhering to any specific label of management. We utilise sulphur/copper sprays, soil inoculating sprays and undervine composting. The soil and the vineyard is where our story begins for every wine that we make, capturing a snapshot of the year in a bottle to share with you.