Our Story

Our Story


The philosophy of ‘The Bress Life’ is based on the fundamentals behind life’s simple pleasures – and learning to both appreciate and enjoy them.

How it all began

How it all began

The story of Bress began with Adam Marks and his love for chickens. While making wine in Burgundy and Beaujolais in 1996, Adam heard that the finest eating chickens in the world hailed from a nearby town called Bourg en Bresse. Not one to make haste, Adam immediately visited a producer and witnessed first-hand their traditional method of breeding chickens. As a result of this discovery, Bress is dedicated to the famous chickens of France and what they represent – artisan production using traditional, age-old methods.

In 2004, Adam and Lynne Jensen came across a rundown vineyard and orchard with untapped potential in Harcourt, Central Victoria – a region where Adam started his winemaking career and where Lynne’s ancestors settled. Inspired by the mixed farming enterprises of France and Italy that they had visited on their travels, they had a vision of creating a place to welcome visitors to experience ‘The Bress Life’

They proceeded to transform the property into a home for Bress, a sustainable farm and a place for visitors to share a meal, learn something new and most of all relax and have fun.

Adam Marks

Adam Marks

Bress Founder and Winemaker

A qualified viticulturist and winemaker with more than 25 years’ experience, Adam has made wine throughout the world for both large and small producers. Disillusioned with large corporate winemaking, Adam established Bress in 2001 with his wife Lynne Jensen with a desire to produce wines from fruit sourced from notable viticultural regions, using a minimal intervention approach in the winery. Adam is an entertaining character and his passion for wine, cider and sustainability on a global scale is evident in all that he does.

The Bress Philosophy

The Bress Philosophy

The philosophy of ‘The Bress Life’ is based on the fundamentals behind life’s simple pleasures – and learning to both appreciate and enjoy them.

What are ‘Simple Pleasures’ according to Bress?

  • We craft quality wine and cider that is made simply – high quality fruit, picked at flavour ripeness, fermented and gently cared for, with minimal intervention
  • We believe winemaking is an art not a science. We blend to taste, not to a formula.
  • We enjoy sharing a meal with family and friends
  • We understand and eat with the seasons
  • We grow our own produce and cook food that respects the simplicity of the ingredients and nourishes the soul
  • We love to play and have fun
  • We enjoy sharing our passion and our knowledge
  • We advocate being in the moment and enjoying nature and the environment

Sustainability

For over eight years we have employed sustainable farming practices which have resulted in a marked improvement in all of our crops – grapes, apples and the vegetables from our Kitchen and Market Gardens.

Philosophy of Appellation

We, like the French, clearly believe that certain grape growing regions are better suited to particular grape varieties than others. The French have understood this for several centuries and some Australian wine producers and growers are now embracing this belief.
Bress is one such producer. We produce wines from several notable grape growing regions throughout Victoria including Macedon, Bendigo, Heathcote and the Yarra Valley.

Understand growing seasons and eat well

Throughout the world the four seasons have traditionally had a sizeable impact on how we grow the majority of our food. We believe that the modernisation of food production (creating less reliance on seasonality) is not a healthy thing and we promote and embrace eating foods that are grown or harvested fresh, according to seasons.

Have fun and don’t take yourself too seriously

A fundamental tenet at Bress! We like to think that we do things well and take pride in that but we don’t get too carried away with ourselves in the process. We are very open to questions from visitors to Cellar Door and are always happy to provide an explanation and assist those who take an interest in what we do.

“To farm in a sustainable manner that is environmentally sound” Adam P. Marks