Let us introduce you to Sam Berketa, winemaker @alphaboxdice.
Q. What got you into wine?
A. I was originally studying a Bachelor of Science (Molecular and Drug Design), but the lab environment didn’t really appeal to me. I really wanted to get into a Visual Arts program, but some gentle guidance from my parents steered me to find a happy middle ground and I ended up at the perfect marriage between my two passions of art and science – winemaking. The choice for winemaking came from my late grandpa, he was the kind of old fella who never drank water, because “fish have sex in it”. Unfortunately, he never got the opportunity to try anything I made but he was the also the supportive sort who would’ve been proud of anything I’d do.
Q. Where are you at on your wine journey?
A. Still very much at the beginning! I’m the first in my family to enter into wine and I only started my adventures mid-2010 with my first day at uni. My journey has taken me to some amazing parts of the world – including Barolo, the Rheinhessen and the Douro valley – working in both the vineyard and winery, and I don’t see that exploration stopping anytime soon. I’ve been given some incredible opportunities and had some truly amazing experiences, all of which has led me to the role of Head Winemaker at Alpha Box & Dice, but there’s still so much I’m learning and so much more for me to discover!
Q. Which of your wines best defines what you’re about?
A. Ugh, sorry for the textbook answer, but every letter of our Alphabet of Wine defines what I’m about in some way. If I had to narrow it down, then probably either the Lazarus NV Ripasso, as it’s my current pinnacle to date on the art of blending, or the Golden Mullet Fury, AB&D’s textural white/orange wine, as it’s super interesting, super delicious and super different, whilst still exhibiting a sense of Mclaren Vale. It’s also a wine that is always developing and evolving and that’s something I’m always trying to do – experiment, adapt and evolve, while learning from my experiences.
#YGOW #YGOWuncut #McLarenVale