The Brown family has lovingly restored Rutherglen’s historic Mount Ophir Estate as both a working vineyard and an exceptional place to stay.
Story Sue Wallace Photos Georgie James
Eliza Brown admits she often gets goosebumps when she walks through the halls of Rutherglen’s historic Mount Ophir Estate, which was once the most elaborate and largest wine-producing centre in the Southern Hemisphere. “This whole place has a rich history and it’s the little things you come across that have been left behind or buried in the dust that take you back in time,” says Eliza, pointing to old wine bottles and two silver trays found hidden in the roof.
It’s been two years since the Browns received the keys to Mount Ophir Estate and embarked on a daunting renovation program, much of which they have completed themselves. The estate now features six impressive accommodation options, ranging from a luxury couples’ getaway in a romantic tower to family accommodation for up to 20 people, as well as areas suitable for weddings and events.
Eliza, who is the CEO of All Saints Estate, her partner, Melbourne restaurateur Denis Lucey, brother and general manager Nick Brown, and sister Angela, who is the sales and marketing director, started the massive project in 2016 and are finally near completion.
They have also re-established the wine brand and plan to release the first Mount Ophir Estate range next year.
This story excerpt is from Issue #121
Outback Magazine: October/November 2018