Home' The Murray Pioneer : February 3rd 2017 Contents www.murraypioneer.com.au Friday, February 3, 2017 NEWS 5
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THREE government grants of up to
$25,000 each, delivered to Riverland
wine recipients, are set to boost the
local industry – and accelerate the
opening of a new Greek restaurant in
Mallee Estate Wines in Renmark
and Byrne Vineyards near Morgan
were successful in their applications
to the Cellar Door Grants Program,
receiving the State Government fund-
ing to upgrade and diversify their cel-
lar doors and wineries.
Riverland Wine will also receive
$24,000 in funding under the
Regional Wine Industry Association
Grants Program to purchase five
pop-up marquees for use at regional
The grant programs are part of the
Government’s new $1.8 million per
year South Australian Wine Industry
Development Scheme, which was
developed to increase wine sales, visi-
tor numbers and create jobs.
Director and winemaker from
Mallee Estate Wines Jim Markeas
said the $25,000 would be put into
cellar door renovations and expan-
“We plan to put in a commercial
kitchen to create a Greek restaurant at
the winery,” he said.
“The restaurant will have inside
and outside dining and will seat about
“The funding will allow us to pro-
mote our wines with fine food and
give tourists a more fulfilling experi-
ence in the Riverland as a wine and
Mr Markeas said the new restaurant
was planned to open in early May.
“My family has been making
wine in Renmark since 1998 and we
opened the cellar door in 2005,” he
“There are no other Greek restau-
rants in the Riverland, so the money
will go towards creating something
new in the region.
“We will employ additional staff to
help run the restaurant – two full-time
and three part-time.
“I think this is a great initiative
by the State Government to expand
wine tourism in the Riverland and
we would be happy to see more local
wineries create restaurants on their
premises to create more interest in the
Byrne Vineyard marketing and
sales manager Shirley Fraser De Zolt
said the $25,000 would similarly be
used to create a new experience and
destination at the main vineyard near
“We have vineyards across the
state, including nearly 90 hectares at
Waikerie and our largest vineyard at
Scott’s Creek near Morgan,” she said.
“Byrne Vineyards is a family-
owned business that has been growing
grapes for over 50 years.
“Currently we have no cellar door
facilities, so the grant will allow us
to find a way of receiving guests in
an intimate and private setting and
be immersed in our property and its
environment and history at our main
vineyard at Scott’s Creek.
“We have a large sustainability
commitment with our business and
have a large wetland and heritage
“The funding will be used to cre-
ate things like pathways, story boards
and facilities for receiving visitors, so
we can conduct small, private tours to
photograph the natural wildlife and
taste our wines amongst the environ-
ment where it is grown.”
Minister of Agriculture, Food
and Fisheries Leon Bignell said the
Riverland is the state’s largest wine
grape growing region.
“The Cellar Door and Regional
Wine Industry Association Grant
Programs will help to ensure growth
in the state’s wine sector and further
cement South Australia’s reputation as
a producer of premium wine,” he said.
“In 2015-16, South Australia’s food
and wine sector generated more than
$18.6 billion in revenue – and in the
12 months to August, 2016, 3400 jobs
“The benefits of these projects will
flow to grape growers, winemakers,
individual wine brands, culinary tour-
ism operations, restaurants, food and
wine event organisers, and the broader
My big, new Greek
Mallee Estate Wines family Evangelos Markeas, 4 months, Arthur Markeas,
Jim Markeas, Eleni Markeas, 3, and Eleni Markeas (back), toast to their state
government funding success which will help them open a new Greek restaurant
in Renmark. PHOTO: Christian Longobardi
Government funding for local wine industry...
The Markeas family have been making
wine in Renmark since 1998
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