Warrego Wines closes at Marburg
THE owners of Warrego Wines have bid a sad farewell to the Marburg property they've proudly called home for 10 years, but the Ipswich brand isn't dead just yet.
The doors officially closed at the Warrego Hwy property on Monday, with owner Kevin Watson pointing to the global financial crisis, the floods and the big liquor stores for a loss of business in recent times.
"The floods alone knocked us back about 15 to 20 per cent," Mr Watson said.
"It's a similar story to a lot of people about here."
Mr Watson said while the eight-hectare property was up for sale, steps were already being made to find a new home for the winery and associated equipment - in Brisbane.
"We'd always hoped that we'd find a buyer who would want to take it on as an investment property, and lease it back to us so we could continue to operate at Marburg," he said.
"Unfortunately that can't happen so we're looking for another location."
Mr Watson said he'd been looking at several suburbs in inner-city Brisbane as a possible new home for the popular local brand.
Even if the business does relocate to Brisbane, Mr Watson said he still intended to maintain the Warrego Wines name because it was well recognised in south-east Queensland and beyond.
The current plan is to create a micro winery with a cafe and cellar door, where visitors will be able to watch the wine-making process as they dine.
"Very much like a micro brewery," Mr Watson said.
Until that happens, Warrego Wines is offering bottles of wine for $10 each, with free delivery to customers close to the winery and $10 per dozen delivery to Brisbane, the Gold Coast and Toowoomba.
"It's just to keep the money coming in - we've still got expenses to cover," Mr Watson said.
Brisbane Valley real estate agent Neil Zabel has been charged with finding a buyer for the former home of the winery which, in addition to the eight hectares, includes an air-conditioned 800 square metre shed.
The current asking price is $925,000, reduced from the $1.2 million price tag initially attached to the rural property in September, when it first went on the market.