Karen Coats was a tax accountant in her previous life, but her passion for Nebbiolo and the Beechworth wine region have made Virago Vineyard her new office of choice. Karen is in her final year of a six year Bachelor of Wine Science degree program at Charles Sturt University. Prue Keith is an orthopaedic surgeon by day, night, and weekend, and devotes her free time (that is not occupied by mountain biking, skiing, and trekking to the peaks of mountains) to Virago Vineyard. Rick Kinzbrunner may be best known for his Giaconda Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, but he also produces a Giaconda Nebbiolo, having been lured in by the complexity of this seductive grape variety. Rick makes our Virago Nebbiolo in the traditional Italian method. The wine remains on skins for an extended period in a large concrete tank, is then basket pressed and transferred to a 1,600 litre Italian Bota cask for approximately three years of ageing. Virago Vineyard is planted on a moderately inclined, north-west facing slope at an altitude of 270 metres. In 2007, a combination of six different Lambia clones were planted on the one hectare vineyard. The two thousand nebbiolo vines were planted by hand, and all pruning, trimming, fruit-thinning, soil tilling and picking is also done by hand each year to ensure a low yield of the highest quality fruit.