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interview including Best Wine in Show … ours which gave me a chance to prove my they make through high school, was the best wine of 17,000 wines ability and knowledge. After three through university, the more those tasted. We also got Best Wine in months I went onto a part-time job people will be helpful in leading them State, the Young Guns Award and which then became full-time, and I on their career path, and that’s what’s Winemakers’ Choice. And at the ended up staying for 10 years. happened to me. Clare Valley Wine Show, we took out the Chairman’s Selection Trophy.” John has now wound up his work with Novita Children’s Services “If you’re willing to prove yourself, “I’ve got a couple of mentors and to go the extra mile, there can I’ve found along the way, and I really be rewards.” look at what they do from both a As well as time, contacts have winemaking point of view and a to focus on Rieslingfreak and a been another ingredient in John’s business point of view, and they’ve scholarship he has established for recipe for success. been there to guide me. teenagers in the Barossa Valley with physical disability. “Rieslingfreak started in 2009 with “I’m lucky. Food and wine are my 100 dozen bottles; in 2017 we were up passions and I’ve been able to make a “Having my own business, I’ve to 7,600 dozen bottles,” he said. successful business from that passion. always had the ambition of coming up “I base this success on the I hope people with cerebral palsy can with a scholarship to support young dedication I give to the business and see what I’m doing, what I’m achieving, people with disability,” he said. the contacts I’ve made along the way. and I hope my story can inspire others, I believe that especially for people especially young people.” “Rieslingfreak now has the Kicking Goals Scholarship, which supports a with disabilities, the more contacts www.rieslingfreak.com.au child going from Year 10 into Year 11, so there’s $500 for each final year of school, followed by $3,500 funding to go towards further education or employment. I’m there to mentor the John in his vineyard in the Barossa Valley. recipient at the same time. “The first scholarship was issued last year to a boy who has the ambition to study medical science, and the second scholarship will be awarded this month (February).” John hopes the scholarship will ease the recipients’ paths into employment, something which he found challenging after leaving school and completing a wine marketing degree. “After uni, I applied for more than 140 jobs. I’d get interviews, and then not go any further,” he said. “I ended up doing work experience at the Australian Wine Research Institute for three months, linkonline.com.au section title 25