Drinks News

A Rootstock retrospective

We toast the natural wine festival that broadened Australia's drinking horizons with a series of photographs that capture Rootstock in all its glory.
Banksii's Rebecca Lines drinking Georgian wine at Rootstock

Banksii's Rebecca Lines

James Broadway

Rootstock – the annual wine party that celebrated everything from natural wine to sustainable agriculture – may have poured its last drinks, but fond memories of the festival live on.

Photographer James Broadway captured the festival in all its weird and wonderful splendour from its early days through to the most recent event in Sydney in 2017. Here he shares some of Roostock’s highlights over its five years in existence along with a running commentary that illuminates the names, faces and happenings that made the event what it was. Raise a glass to Rootstock.

Thanks to Mike Bennie for additional assistance in putting names to faces.

Sommeliers Jacq Turner and Meg Power with Lobby the Lobster hats at Rootstock 2014.

Rootstock number two: the team before the crowds flooded in. From left: Giorgio de Maria, Linda Wiss, Matt Young, Mike Bennie, James Hird.

Everybody wants to drink natural wine.

Winemaker Tom Shobbrook (aka Tommy Ruff or Didi). Speaks for himself.

Bruce Pascoe, author of Dark Emu, drinking Two Metre Tall beer with chef Dave Moyle. This photo represents what Rootstock achieved in bringing people like this together to collaborate into the future.

Marty Boetz’s gorgeous produce from the Cook’s Co-Op farm.

Banjo Harris-Plane (Bar Liberty) performing his Natural Wine Rap.

A defining Rootstock moment, when the connection was made with indigenous agriculture and the Djaadjawan Dancers came to Carriageworks.

Wine writer Alice Feiring.

Agi Gajic, senior brewer from Young Henrys Brewery in Newtown.

John Wurdeman of Pheasant’s Tears, who brought Georgia to Rootstock. An extraordinary connection made.

The crazy legend of Pantelleria – Gabrio Bini – entertaining Analiese Gregory (right) and Jessica “Fatcat” Tan.

Africola chef Duncan Welgemoed carries the beast’s head to the finale feast at Rootstock number three.

Max Allen, a Rootstock patron and stalwart.

Stacy Masiruw, one of the awesome people behind the logistics of making Rootstock happen.

Inventive sustainability.

Banksii’s Rebecca Lines drinking Georgian wine with her son inside a Georgian Qvevri. Pretty much sums Rootstock up.

Cooking on charcoal pits with Dave Moyle keeping an eye on progress.

Winemaker Anton van Klopper, spiritual leader of the Basket Range “Naturalistes” and general chief operative of the zeitgeist.

Bindi’s Michael Dhillon (third from left) proving that natural wine is a deeply considered, intellectual project of integrity as well as a naked fire party.

Attica‘s Ben Shewry does Chainsaw Massacre Aussie Barbecue to the obvious pleasure of Myffy Rigby and Sarah Norris at Rootstock number five.

Gio Paradiso and Maurice Terzini: legends giving their time out of love!

Garden guru Costa Georgiadis.

Volunteers – people loved Rootstock.

Automata sommelier Tim Watkins and crocheted shorts. The face of the woman at the bar says it all: speechless.

A mystery wine drinker, photographer James Broadway, Amanda Olivia. Someone got hold of the photographer’s camera. Might have been Emily of the legendary Emily’s Paddock from Jasper Hill.

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