This series of images are from a recent weekend break up in the Victorian Pyrennes, staying at the Warrenmang winery and resort. The relaxing two night break began with us driving approximately two hours north west of Melbourne to the Moonambel Valley in central Victoria. This is a region renowned for its abundant treasure of superb food and wine, and on this occasion it most certainly did not disappoint. Although it was a two day holiday, I naturally packed my camera and several lenses but decided against bringing a tripod; something which I later regretted.
As usual I found myself taking many panoramic images of the sweeping vista’s – vineyards certainly seem to be the perfect subject matter and I tend to use the Canon 50mm f1.2L for the majority of the shots. This beautiful lens is particularly sharp at f8, and yields superb colour and contrast; because I tend to allow approximately 30% overlap between images that I plan on stitching together, I am also utilising the sharpest possible area, or ‘sweet spot’ of the lens in each panorama.
The image below was taken at dusk on the first night that we arrived; I have slightly increased the saturation in the RAW files to both match and do justice to the wonderful warm light cast by the setting sun, combined with the lovely purple hues in the sky over the distant mountain range.
On this particular 145 acre vineyard, winemaker Luigi Bazzani grows Shiraz, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Dolcetto, Traminer and Chardonnay grapes, with the wine available for tasting and of course to accompany the excellent food at the onsite restaurant.
Naturally enough due to the soil and meso-climate of long warm days and cool evenings in the region, Warrenmang is not the only vineyard in the area. As such, following a hearty breakfast we headed to nearby Dalwhinnie vineyard for a tasting. The following panorama is the view taken from the car park just before heading to the cellar door…
While working as an architectural photographer, and while shooting panoramic images, I tend to make most of my images with an aperture of between f8 – f11; as such when I am out taking pictures for my personal gratification I do enjoy shooting wide open with a nice shallow depth of field (many would argue that this is the only way to utilise the 50 f1.2 and the 85 f1.2 that I use..!) Each vineyard that we visited had an abundance of flowers waiting to be captured; in some cases the following images are quite heavily cropped from the original files, one of the benefits of a high resolution sensor.
Stopping at Redbank winery for lunch, we sat in the warm sun while this gentleman played and sang a selection of classic songs…
Following an extremely interesting Sunday morning tour of Warrenmang winery which was conducted by winemaker Luigi Bazzani himself, we had one last walk around the vines and in the process I captured the following panoramas.
Throughout the tour and subsequent tasting, Luigi explained the difference between the barrels used to age the wine, as well as how to feel the difference between a good and bad barrel. Watching him run his hands over the oak, the affection he had for these old friends was most apparent. After deciding prior to our trip that we were not going to severely limit our spending, we headed back to Melbourne having joined two wine clubs and with 26 bottles of wine in the boot. Definitely a weekend to be repeated…!