Alberto Antonini and David Gleave have known each other since meeting in Montalcino in 1989. Both make their living from Italian wine - Alberto as a winemaker, consultant and grape grower, David as the UK importer of some of Italy's top producers - yet they have often discussed over the years the great allure of Australia and Australian wine. The styles of wine, and the freedom to plant and develop the best variety for your piece of land, is of great appeal to them both. So when Mark Walpole took Alberto Antonini, to visit the Greenstone site, Alberto wasted no time in ringing David in London. “I’m standing on a hill in Heathcote that would make a great vineyard,” he shouted and that was all it took to set the Greenstone Vineyard in motion. The initial excitement of the three original partners remains undiminished, and is clearly vindicated by the quality of the wines produced
Mark is a native of Victoria and studied farm management at Melbourne University. He worked for Brown Brothers for 20 years, the last decade managing their 700 hectares of vineyard. He has his own vineyard in Beechworth, and is widely recognised as one of Australia’s leading viticulturists. He has undertaken numerous trips to Europe, particularly Italy, to study indigenous European varieties.
Alberto studied agronomy at the University of Florence, after which he did post- graduate work in Bordeaux and at the University of California at Davis. Following graduation, he worked for Frescobaldi and then took up the post of technical director at Col d’Orcia in Montalcino in 1989. In 1994, he was appointed technical director at Antinori in San Casciano, a post he left at the end of 1996 to set up his own consultancy company, Matura. He also started Altos las Hormigas, an Argentinian winery, in 1996.
Alberto is consultant to numerous wineries in Italy, where he also has his own estate Poggiotondo; to Argentina, Spain, California and Australia.
David Gleave was born and educated in Canada, but has lived in the U.K. since 1978. He has worked in the wine business since 1981, becoming a Master of Wine in 1986. He is the managing director of Liberty Wines, a London-based importer of premium wines that he founded in 1997. He is also a director of the Delta Vineyard, a producer of top Pinot Noir from Marlborough in New Zealand.
He has written widely on wine, particularly on Italian wines, and published a book on the subject in 1989. A contributor to the Oxford Companion of Wine, he has written numerous articles for magazines such as Wine and Decanter.