The Man from Mosel River is Rainer Adam, a native of Trier who lives in Bangkok, Thailand.
I am in my late fifties, married to Margit and have two children: the twins Lucy and Charlotte. My wife is from Adelaide and the children are also of Australian nationality. Jokingly, I often say that I am the only foreigner in my family.
The Adam family at Bacco restaurant in Bangkok, 29 November 2011
The Adam family in 2007 in Jakarta
By training I am an agricultural economist. I graduated from Bonn University with a Masters Degree in 1982 and a PhD degree in 1987.
I worked for almost three years with the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) and was posted in Rome, Italy. This is were I met my wife-to-be Margit. On May 8 (international womens day), we met in an Italian language class. She worked at the FAO as an editor. We got married in Rome, (on capitol hill) which was very romantic and discovered together our love for Italian food and wine.
I have now been working in Asia for about 22-23 odd years. Most of this time I spent in Indonesia (about 10 years), China (about 6 years), India (about 2 years) and Taiwan (about 2 years) and the rest in Malaysia and Singapore. Since September 2008 we live in Bangkok, Thailand but as regional director for Southeast and East Asia my work requires me to travel much more frequently than during my assignment in Indonesia. If you are interested in my work please visit the following websites:
You can also find me on facebook, twitter and skype.
Privately one of my passions is vineyards and wine production. In 1995 we bought a 50-acre block in Glenburn (Murrindindi Shire), Victoria. Our friend Steve Sadlier (Vineadvice) from Yarra Glen convinced us that we could establish a vineyard there. With his help this dream was put into reality.
We planted 5 acres in 1996 (half Sauvignon Blanc and half Cabernet) and another 3 1/2 in 1997 (Merlot). In 2001 we had to pull the Cabernet out because the grapes could not fully ripen. We replanted with Pinot Noir. In October 2007 we extended the vineyard and planted 1.5 acres of Chardonnay. Our total area under vines is now 10 acres/about 4 ha.
We called our venture Two Hills Vineyard. The vineyard is located at the most southern tip of the Upper Goulburn River Wine Region surrounded by vast Eucalyptus forests.
It’s a very cold site. The block used to be grazing land and the soils were of low fertility and poor structure, white loam over clay, wet in winter and powdery dry in summer. This makes them difficult to work.
We use a very simple VSP (vertical shoot positioning) trellising system with two fruit wires. All vineyards are located on gently northerly slopes which give them a maximum of sun and heat collection ability and which allows the use of vineyard machinery.
The cool climate produces excellent fruit with a fine composition of acids. Our winters are quite cold. Summers and autumns are usually dry which all adds up to a very healthy environment requiring a minimum of intervention. Our vines are hand pruned and all fruit is hand harvested.
Our first vintage, more on a trial basis, was in 2000. We followed with Sauvignon Blanc in 2001 and 2002, the latter of which won us a Bronze Medal at the Singapore Wine Show. We made our first Merlot in 2001, and followed it up with vintages in 2004 and 2006. The years in between we sold the grapes and did not make wine. Our wines are made by Alan Johns of Yering Farm. All our wines are single vineyard wines and no blending is taking place.
Today, we have mothballed our vineyard. This means the vines are preserved but no grapes are produced. The wine glut in Australia forced us out of the fruit market. Our grapes did not find a home for a number of years, therefore we dicided to go temporarily out of production. We still have some Merlot to sell, the 2008 vintage.
Since 2003 we export regularly to Germany. Information can be obtained from Dr. Ulrich Hillejan (+49-2863-6802 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting +49-2863-6802 end_of_the_skype_highlighting).
In the February 9, 2009 forest fires in Victoria, we almost lost our house and the vineyard. Neighbours and the local fire brigade with help from New-South Wales saved the place. We were so relieved. But many people lost their lives and everything. We should not forget them.
“To your health”, as we say in Germany
I also like to eat good food and to drink fine wines, I enjoy dinner with family and friends where I might smoke a good cigar sitting on the terrace overlooking my tropical garden. Other passions include gardening, reading and music.
Basically I am a family man and enjoy nothing more then spending time with Margit, Lucy and Charlotte.