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Quality cool climate wine from the Orange wine growing region in New South Wales, Australia

He ist from Denmark and iz harving troubles with "arnimarles".

Bloodwood Wine Press

He ist from Denmark and iz harving troubles with "arnimarles".

Stephen Doyle

According to Christian, who is but one of approximately five million Danes in Denmark but a very comfortable majority of Danish types at the excellent Reynolds Yarraman vineyard in the wild sandstone country of the Upper Hunter,"dees arnimarles are dicking holes in de vinyard and causing de tracator to overflip ven hitting at speed... oh yeas, and dees arnimarles are vombats wit dicking claws actif in de vinyard arose after sundown". How can you Australians tolerate such arnimarles and der dicking holes all over de place and zo on.

Apparently, back in the land of the mink the viking and the feral cat, "vombats" wouldn't get a viticultural look in if they carried on like those nasty bastards up Wybong way. Christian says they should be farmed for their fur. It would be a matter of tenderly locking them up for the duration, and after a quick wack on the back of the nut,. hey presto, one high quality, fully impounded vombat stole, vit for a kink.

And the leftovers? Well we offered him an authentic full-cream recipe for genuine vombat bisque au gratin as handed down through generations of airborne Aussie vineyard tractor drivers.. a method which I suspect he dutifully transcribed into Danish on the flap of his well-travelled backpack. I can see it all now. A stole of Crepe Vombat au gratin... the genuine, environmentally sound fully imported gourmet delight niche-marketed to the unsuspecting diners of Double Pay as the taste sensation you can eat or wear. Go for it Christian, those hairy bastards deserve it!

And yet he raises a serious problem for isolated vineyards. Often I am approached to assess a prospective site which would gladden the heart of a lonely wombat one scratch short of a dicking stick, and cause the local kangaroo population to pogo stick about the countryside in anticipation. Picture, if you will, a recently cleared block of land with newly burnt windrows of first growth timber playing naughts and crosses up and down the slope. Now there's nothing wrong with the northern facing slope, and the soils are free draining, moderately fertile and friable: in short a site and soil type perfectly suited to vineyards, "hole dicking vombats", and  pogo sticking kangaroos.

However, the very isolation of the site, completely surrounded as it usually is by bush makes it an ideal holiday home for our furry tourist friends in need of a spot of rest and recreation. Now all the viticultural textbooks make prominent mention of the problems posed by frost and poor soil drainage. They even spend a fair amount of time discussing the potential losses major weed or fungal infections can cause. But check out "vombat damage", or "kangaroo shenanigans" or even "arnimarles" in the index of your expensive viticultural textbook, and see what you come up with.

You may as well be growing vines in Denmark.