News & Events

2016 Yarra Valley Vintage Complete

M&S has provided interstate line-haul and metro delivery services to many wineries in the Yarra Valley, however this year marked the first time that we were actively involved in collecting the fruit from the vineyards and taking it for processing.

Rob Dolan Wines invited us to partner with them in this venture.

If you don’t know Rob Dolan Wines, you can check them out here. Within 5 years of launching in 2010, Rob Dolan and his team have cemented themselves as a premier player in the Yarra Valley, having been named the 2014 Newcomer Winery of the Year at the James Halliday Australian Wine Companion Awards.

This was followed up by the illustrious 5 Red Star rating in the James Halliday Wine Companion symbolising “an outstanding winery regularly producing wines of exemplary quality and typicity” in 2015.

Over a five week period through February and March, M&S moved over 1,200 bins of grapes from over 20 different vineyards across the Yarra Valley, and as far afield as Nagambie.

That’s over 400,000 kgs of truckloads of grapes.

In order to successfully meet the needs of Rob Dolan Wines, we provided a dedicated 24/7 contact, with a max 2 hour response time. Working from as early as 3:15am, and as late as 1:00am, the M&S team were charged with ensuring that the time the grapes spent in the bins from pick to processing plant was at a minimum.

Adding to this challenge was the need to work around the weather – this year extreme heat proved to be our biggest adversary, along with the requisite surprising bursts of rain. Simultaneous ripening of many varietals also meant that the peak demand loads were higher than ever before. You can read more about that from Rob Dolan’s Senior Winemaker Mark Nikolich here.

At its peak, M&S provided 22 loads per day in and out of the Yarra Valley. Semi trailers and rigids were tasked with ensuring that empty bins arrived at the right vineyards and the right time, maximising all resources including labour, bins and vehicles.

Rob Dolan comments on M&S performance;

“The M&S team were fantastic to work with. The 2016 vintage presented particular challenges with varietals ripening together, and they handled it all. There was excellent communication between our teams – a real sense that we were in it together. We are very happy with their performance. We’ve already asked them to do it again in 2017!”

Projects like the vintage are exactly the types of jobs the we thrive on. Complex challenges with critical time constraints that require creative thinking to generate solutions. If you have a project coming up, please reach out to us at 1300 993 001, to our operations team at, or our GM directly at