Dean is the great all-rounder of the Jenke Vineyards team.
Stepping into the role of Cellar Hand in 2018, he brought with him a lifetime of farming, almost two decades of perfecting the art of vineyard management, time in the great Barossa barrel halls and a thirst for learning how to craft the finest wine.
Not to mention his attention to detail, strong work ethic, love for solving problems, and immense pride in every single thing that he does.
Learning from the best
Dean loves the variety, the challenge and hands-on nature of his role. But the beauty of it for him, is being able to learn from one of the Barossa’s winemaking elite.
Dean thrives on gaining new knowledge and skills, and feels privileged to have access to the vast amount of winemaking wisdom Rod is always willing to impart.
As Dean reveals, “Rod said to me ‘Treat the wine like a living thing, because it is. It’s always changing so you need to respect it, and nurture it.’ This has stuck with me so much and shapes how I go about my daily work.”
Barossa born & bred
Like the entire Jenke team, Dean’s family is firmly entrenched in Barossa history.
As a fifth generation Barossan, Dean grew up working on his home farm in Angaston. He has fond memories of helping his Grandpa amongst the apricots, plums and grapes from a toddler.
Dean has always been hands-on and developed an entrepreneurial spirit at an early age.
A young achievement was planting his own Semillon vineyard and having his hand-picked, premium grapes be highly sought after by Peter Lehmann Wines.
Life amongst the vines
After leaving high school, Dean spent 17 years in the Hoffmann vineyards in Bethany, learning how to navigate every contour of the land and produce premium fruit.
With his interest in winemaking growing, Dean decided to see what happened on the other side of the crusher and spent time amongst the barrels of Wolf Blass and Orlando.
Having experienced all parts of the vineyard and cellaring, a chance phone call came from Mark Jenke offered Dean the opportunity to bring it all together and put his stamp on the new era of Jenke Vineyards. An opportunity he accepted and relishes every day.
As seasoned grape growers, Mark and Dean collaborate beautifully, and learn from each other.