Recognized as a world-class producer of single vineyard chardonnay and pinot noir, Giant Steps joins Yangarra Estate Vineyard and Hickinbotham Clarendon Vineyard, both in McLaren Vale, as part of Jackson Family Wines in Australia.
“Our family is excited to be a part of the Yarra Valley community and to help build upon the incredible legacy of Phil Sexton and Steve Flamsteed,” says Christopher Jackson, second-generation proprietor of Jackson Family Wines. “Our discussion with Phil started before the COVID-19 pandemic. While the global wine market has changed dramatically, it has not dampened our family’s enthusiasm towards Giant Steps.”
Giant Steps was established in 1997, when owner Phil Sexton arrived in the Yarra Valley in search of ideal sites to produce chardonnay and pinot noir with purity and finesse. With the help of Chief Winemaker Steve Flamsteed, who joined the winery in 2003, the two set to create a single vineyard range of wines that personifies each site. Today, the winery is regarded as one of the most progressive in Australia and is recognized globally for its pursuit of site expression. Giant Steps’ single vineyard wines are among the most anticipated releases from Australia and considered benchmarks for the Yarra Valley.
“This is a remarkable new chapter for Giant Steps,” says Sexton. “The Jackson family has demonstrated an invaluable commitment to the Australian wine community over the last two decades, and we feel confident in our shared vision for the winery’s future. The recognition of the diversity of the Yarra Valley, and the development of ‘great dirt as vineyards’ is what brought the Jackson family and Giant Steps initially together and will continue to be our key goal.”
The acquisition includes the purchase of Giant Steps’ Sexton and Applejack vineyards (close to 75 total hectares), both monopole vineyards. Sexton will continue his role as Founder and General Manager, and Flamsteed will remain Chief Winemaker at Giant Steps.
“We celebrate this achievement and are grateful to feel continually welcomed into the Australian winemaking community.” – Christopher Jackson
Jackson Family Wines’ collection of 40 wineries spans significant winegrowing regions, from California, Oregon, France, and Italy in the northern hemisphere, to Australia, Chile, and South Africa in the southern half of the globe. Vineyard ownership and sustainable practices remain key to consistent quality and artisan winemaking is built to scale, underscoring a steadfast commitment to making wines of character and integrity.
“Our company was founded with the foresight of Jess Jackson and the belief that investment in the future is essential,” notes Rick Tigner, CEO of Jackson Family Wines. “This acquisition reflects our commitment not only to Australia’s exceptional vineyards and wines, but to the global wine industry and the people who share in a long-term vision for the future.”