Turners Crossing was established when business owner Phil Bennett and Vigneron Paul Jenkins discovered the land for the vineyard on the banks of the Loddon River in Victoria’s historic Bendigo region in 2002. Since then, Turners Crossing has been producing wines of outstanding quality that speak of a sense of place and provenance.
The Turners Crossing name honours a former local publican, Thomas Turner, who purchased land at this site in 1868, and it bears the well-trodden footprints of farmers who used this passage to cross the river, from the mid-to late 1800s.
During the Central Victorian Gold Rush era, while miners were panning for prosperity, others were quietly planting vines, influenced by their European homeland, and trusting that Bendigo’s terroir would reveal itself as a suitable site on which to grow grapes. And they were right to be so confident. Bendigo’s gold-bearing soils proved ideally suited to viticulture. Its alluvial composition and Mediterranean climate make it a happy home for warm climate varieties in particular.
Turners Crossing Vineyard now spans 42 hectares on well-drained, red sandy clay topsoil. The sub-soil is red light-to-medium clay containing limestone pebbles. The vineyard is virtually pesticide and chemical free; warm days and cool nights allow the grapes to ripen during the day and the vines to recover overnight. Vines are spur-pruned and bud numbers are calculated to deliver low yields, but quality fruit.
The vineyard bears shiraz, cabernet sauvignon, viognier and picolit grapes, a rare white variety of Italian origin.
Australian wine writer James Halliday recently referred to the wines of Turners Crossing as having “uncommon distinction”. Since Turners Crossing’s first vintage, James Halliday has consistently rated the wines between 91 and 96 points, and he has distinguished it as a 5 Star wine producer since 2007.