As the relationship between France and Australia and France has matured, so have the exchanges become more reciprocal. Academic exchanges and partnerships have been established; for example, the University of Adelaide’s Wine Economics Research Centre welcoming affiliates from the universities of Bordeaux and Dijon.

Dominique Portet

Australians have been attending and participating in Vinexpo Bordeaux since its inception. Increasingly, ‘flying winemakers’ commute between hemispheres, some choosing to remain in their adopted country. Provençale Emmanuelle Bekkers, who completed several vintages in Australia after working at Hardys’ Languedoc property, eventually settled and bought a vineyard in McLaren Vale. After a long career at Taltarni in central Victoria where he helped pioneer the new wave of sparkling wine in Australia, Bordelais Dominique Portet established his own vineyard in the Yarra Valley.

Michel Chapoutier and Jacques Lurton, both from respected French wine dynasties, have also bought vineyards in Australia and export wine to France where Australian wines are gaining greater prominence and critical acclaim. Specialist merchants such as South World Wines, established by Australian-born Gaetan Turner, represent selected Australian producers, whose wines are sold in both supermarkets and liquor chains.

And in the twenty-first century, the 1960s Australian bag-in-box innovation (Le Bag-in-Box™) now represents nearly half the wine sold in France.