“I feel like I was born into the wine industry.”
Jessica Irving was born into a winery building family in the Riverina so there’s quite a lot of the industry – and the region – in her blood. After finishing school in Sydney she studied for a Wine Science degree at Charles Sturt University Wagga Wagga and, after graduating, worked in a series of wineries in and around Griffith before joining De Bortoli Wines in 2009.
Jessica is currently head of the Finished Wine Cellar where she “prepares wines for the bottle, ensuring the quality of the wine is at its best prior to bottling so that the customer will be receiving the highest quality product”. It is a job she loves because “no day is the same.”
When she’s not making sure the wines are the best that they can be, Jessica unwinds in two quite distinct ways. One, is with the adrenaline rush of jet-skiing, knee-boarding and wake-boarding (“I love the feeling of freedom on top of the water and flying in the sky jumping over a wave.”), the other the more contemplative act of gardening. In some ways it matches the ebb and flow of life in the winery, a perfect fit for somebody with the industry in her blood.
"Drinking wine is very personal, so try not to be influenced by others. If you like it, drink it, and don’t be scared to say that you don’t prefer a particular style or variety when someone else may like it."
Jessica was a finalist in the The Wine Society’s Young Australian Winemaker of the Year award.