4 month ‘residency’ at Zig Zag Rd. Winery
May – August 2022
Zig Zag Rd. is looking for a wine enthusiast to live on the farm from the beginning of May to the end of August 2022 (4 months), to support the ongoing running of the vineyard, winery, cellar door and homestead.
Owners, Henry and Harriet, will be traveling to Europe in June, July and August to see family,, and need a self starter with the motivation to learn about viticulture and wine to help run the wine tasting room and support the ongoing viticultural and wine making tasks (you’ll receive intensive training in May, then you’ll be supported by Stuart, a Zig Zag Rd. team member, for the remaining months).
In return, you’ll be living in a self contained and very beautiful converted train carriage looking over the vineyard. Then move into (if you wish) a charming and cosy mudbrick farm house for the remaining 3 months. In addition to the farm accommodation and training, a small stipend of $300 per month ($1,200 in total) will be provided.
If you’re looking to get into viticulture and/or wine making, or just fascinated by wine and the process, and looking to make the move out to the country on a 20 acre farm, this could be a residency that opens up opportunities. This could also be perfect for somebody already in part time work, allowing them to work from the farm some days and on the farm on others.
What you’ll be doing
A large part of the role will be to lead tastings at the Zig Zag Rd. cellar door on weekends. You’ll also be a farm and cellar hand, supporting the processes of pruning, tying down, trellis maintenance, vineyard floor management, and wine production. Finally, you’ll play a role in the maintenance and development of the homestead: pruning the fruit trees, weeding, mulching and ongoing maintenance.
You’ll be working between 15 – 18 hours per week, of which 10 hours will be on 3 out of 4 weekends (per month) leading tastings at the cellar door.
Specific tasks include
- Leading wine tastings, and managing the cellar door, at the Zig Zag Rd. cellar door for 3 weekends of every month (12pm – 5pm)
- Supporting the pruning process of the vineyard (role will be dependent on skill-set)
- Topping wine barrels and other winery tasks, including bottling and production
- Rotating sheep and (potentially) other livestock/poultry around the vineyard to support
our regenerative approach
- Creating biochar and compost to support soil regeneration
- Pruning fruit trees, weeding gardens and ongoing maintenance of the homestead
- Other ad hoc tasks as they arise
Training and support
During May, owners Henry and Harriet will work with you to give you a full understanding of the farm, processes and philosophy behind Zig Zag Rd. Training will give you a good understanding of how we’re growing the fruit using regenerative and sustainable practices; how we’re making the wine and the processes behind the wine making; how to lead a wine tasting and the characteristics of Zig Zag Rd. and Kind Folk wines. We’ll also teach you hands on practical skills such as the process of pruning, tying down vines, ensuring wine quality is maintained, livestock management and the ongoing skills of homestead and farm maintenance skills.
In June, July and August, you’ll work closely with Stuart (vineyard and winery team member), who will be managing the farm in that period (Henry and Harriet will be in Europe), who has worked at Zig Zag Rd. for 1.5 years, and well versed in the farm and wine making processes.
Accommodation and other benefits
In May, you’ll stay in the beautifully converted ‘Caboose’: a 1950’s red rattler guardsmans carriage. It’s equipped with a kitchen (4 gas hobs, no oven), small bar fridge, small washing machine, shower, table, chairs, cupboard space, queen sized bed, pot belly fire and air conditioning if you need, and a very stunning, small verandah with the best view in the property. It’s quite a small space, but suitable for one or two people. We’ve had people living there for 8 months at a time.
In June, July and August, when Henry and Harriet are overseas, you’re welcome to move into the main farm house: a cosy mudbrick dwelling, heated by log burner, with a very beautiful master bedroom. It has everything you need for living, with stunning views over the property. Note, this is optional, and you may wish to stay in the lovely caboose.
All bills will be covered, and wifi is available in both the caboose and the house.
In addition to the farm accommodation and training, we’ll provide a stipend of $300 per month, which will help you cover food and other costs.
The ideal person
You should be aware that winter in the Macedon Ranges is very beautiful but quite harsh. Long spells of rain, and freezing cold mornings and nights can occur. Whilst people will be around, and the cellar door tastings are social and pleasant, the viticulture work can be quite isolating.
With this in mind, the ideal person will relish the opportunity to gain hands on viticultural, wine making and wine tasting experience. If you have a romantic vision of being on land and farming, please think carefully before applying.
Some key attributes we’d love to see include:
- A fascination and a little knowledge of wine. Most of our customers aren’t interested in the hard, technical details of wine making, and you won’t be expected to be an expert. But a motivation in the processes behind the wine will make this experience rich
- Good people skills: the main skill at the cellar door is being welcoming and having social intelligence. Wine can be intimidating, and we pride ourselves on making people feel comfortable and having a lovely time
- An understanding of farm life. Specifically the non-romantic realities of it
- A little bit handy: you’re able to fix a fence post, chop wood, and quickly pick up how to
move a mobile sheep fence. Or, at the very least, be a quick learner and up for it
- A self-starter: someone that can find their own motivation in this context is very important
- You have steel toe capped boots and solid farm wear
- You have an RSA (this isn’t a deal breaker, and we could organise this for the right
Please fill out the form below, and hit APPLY. We’ll be in touch with you shortly.
Note, before writing the application, we strongly recommend you read through information at zigzagwines.com.au to understand our philosophy, approach and work.