Celebrating Women in Wine: Susan Papps, Yelland & Papps

By Vinomofo
3 months ago
3 min read

You’ll find mother and winemaker Susan Papps at the helm of her eponymous boutique wine brand Yelland & Papps. Established in 2005 with her husband Michael, they specialise in small batch, distinctive drops which reflect the intricate soils and microclimates of the Barossa. They’ve won a legion of fans (including us) who enjoy purely-fruited, minimal-intervention wines from Australia’s most famous wine region.

"I love wine, the process and everything about it, but in essence to be able to put your creation and style in a product is honestly totally rewarding."

What I wanted to be as a kid: "Travel agent, I soon realised I just actually wanted to travel and not be an agent! To be in business or own a business. Reading anything Paul Clitheroe and David Koch printed at 19 years of age, I knew I wanted to have my own business."

When I first realised winemaking could be a job: "My first job was working for Woolworths and Macs Liquor, and I realised then I wanted to be a part of the Wine Industry. Deliberating to study oenology, I thought I couldn’t do it, so I headed overseas and worked and studied at Windows of the World Wine School NYC. Sometimes I regret not achieving my oenology degree, but my life experience was worth more to me in the long run."

The reason I chose to make wine here: "I travelled from my hometown on Yorke Peninsula to the Barossa looking for a job and finally someone gave me an opportunity in the region. I feel very at home in the Barossa Valley surrounded by all thing’s food and wine, even if I am not a local!"

What winemaking means to me: "I love wine, the process and everything about it, but in essence to be able to put your creation and style in a product is honestly totally rewarding."

My biggest win & fail: "Creating a brand and a business while raising two children. Biggest fail - listening to the wrong people and not your gut."

"Do not underestimate yourself, or let others underestimate you."

Who I look up to in the wine industry: "I look up to the quiet achievers that just push forward and create thought and people I know that have gone through tough times and made some tough decisions to succeed."

The biggest barrier for women entering the wine industry: "Can I say The Boys club? The realisation you can be both a mother and run a business."

What I would like to see happen next for Women in Wine: "To be considered and accepted into more major roles of influence and decision making. To dissolve gender description and that we are just winemakers or owners."

Advice I would give to women wanting to enter the wine industry: "Do not underestimate yourself, or let others underestimate you."

My wine of choice to relax on a Friday: "To be honest a Chablis or white burgundy under the fig tree."

My current music jam: "As an avid Triple J listener, mostly what is playing on the station. I find it entertaining the return of my era classics that my 13- and 15-year-old are discovering and enjoying!"

We're committed to ALWAYS having wines available that are made by women. In an industry that’s still dominated by men, we believe in celebrating the incredible work women are doing. Here’s to our Women in Wine!

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