Nick Bulleid MW


Nick Bulleid MW

Member since    June 1981

  • Specialist wine consultant and professor of wine science with over 40 years experience in producing, studying, tasting, analysing and writing about all types of Australian and imported wines.
  • 1997    Foundations of Management (short business management course), Graduate School of Management, Macquarie University
  • 1992    Master of Wine, The Institute of Masters of Wine, London, U.K.
  • 1968 to 1969    M.Sc. Oceanography, University of Southampton, U.K.
  • 1965 to 1968    B.Sc. (Hons) Zoology, Botany and Chemistry, University College Cardiff, Wales

Nick Bulleid has been a significant contributor to the ASVO having been involved in education, communication, industry benchmarking, and providing mentorship to numerous members of the Australian wine community. Nick joined the ASVO as a foundation member in 1981 and has been a previous director (Member of the Committee of Management at this time) from 1996 to 1998 representing NSW and 1999 to 2001 as a General member. He convened and presented at the 1997 ASVO Seminar “Emerging White Varieties”, presented at the 1999 ASVO Seminar “Modern Viticulture - Meeting Market Specification” and convened the 2001 ASVO Seminar “Who's Running This Show? Future Directions for the Australian Wine Show System”. Nick also presented at the 10th AWITC in Sydney and convened a workshop at the 12th AWITC in Melbourne. He continues to volunteer time to ASVO advisory committees assessing applicants for the AWAC Scholarship and nominees for the ASVO Awards for Excellence.

Nick has made a major contribution to defining industry best practice in wine show benchmarking. Following the 2001 ASVO Seminar, Nick chaired the ASVO Wine Show Committee that developed the 2004 ASVO Wine Show Recommendations which were presented to the industry at the 12th Australian Wine Industry Technical Conference in Melbourne. He also contributed to the 2015 ASVO Wine Show Technical Advisory Group and co-authored the 2015 ASVO Wine Show Best Practice Recommendations. The ASVO wine show recommendations have been well adopted across the Australian industry over the last 15 years and have produced more robust and uniform practices.

Nick has made extensive contributions to industry benchmarking having judged at Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth, Adelaide, and Hobart Royal wine shows, the Sydney International Wine Competition, and many regional shows. He was chairman of the Canberra Regional Wine Show for five years and chairman of the New South Wales Wine Awards for three years.  He has also judged at the Royal Easter Wine Show and the Air New Zealand Wine Awards in Auckland, New Zealand, the Hawke’s Bay Wine Awards, Liquorland Top 100 in Wellington, the International Wine Challenge in London and the Wine Style Asia Awards in Singapore. Through these numerous roles, he has contributed to industry benchmarking but has also passionately mentored numerous young wine industry professionals and openly shared his knowledge of the world of wine.

Nick was previously Wine Manager for Cellarmaster Wines Pty Ltd and for nine years working in the head office of Southcorp Wines Pty Ltd, primarily to assist the flow of information between wine production and the marketing and sales departments. In 1992 he became the third Master of Wine in Australia, passing the examination on his first attempt. Nick has subsequently shared his extensive knowledge of wine production and sensory evaluation as a Visiting Professor at Charles Sturt University, Wagga Wagga, for 13 years teaching wine evaluation in the School of Agricultural and Wine Sciences.
Nick has been widely recognised as an outstanding wine communicator having been a full-time wine journalist writing for national newspapers and magazines – this was recognised early when he was awarded the Charles Heidsieck Award for Excellence in Wine Writing in 1985. Further, in 2004 he was made a life member of the Wine Press Club of New South Wales, having been President of the Club during 1985/6 and 1986/7. More recently he has been the joint editor and author of the Australian Winemaking textbook on practical winemaking, which is published on-line by and Wine Publishers, Adelaide. He continues to write occasional articles for consumers and a regular column “From the tasting bench” in WBM, Australia’s Wine Business Magazine.

Nick is a successful viticulturist, winemaker and businessman. Since 1978 he has been a shareholder and Director of Brokenwood Wines Pty Ltd in the Hunter Valley and manages his own Hatherleigh vineyard in the Southern Tablelands which he established in the late 1990s. Nick is a highly regarded independent consultant, providing assistance with winemaking, blending, quality assessment, valuation, and marketing, both in Australia and New Zealand. He is frequently engaged as an expert witness in disputes and legal cases involving wine quality and technical issues.


Professional Experience

1999 - Present    Wine Consultant
•    Provides independent services regarding wine in production for wine producers in several states in Australia.
•    Advises on winemaking, blending and quality control issues.
•    Provides valuations of bulk and packaged stocks.
•    Works with and advises the Vineyard Manager and Senior Winemaker at Stanton and Killeen, Rutherglen, on pruning, grape quality and timing of picking.
•    Examines vineyards to determine management problems. Some of these he has already identified via defects in wines tasted.
•    Works with grape-grower and winemaking organisations via benchmark tastings to assist them in improving their production methods.
•    Frequently consulted as expert witness in relation to disputes over wine quality, value, winemaking standards, packaging and commercial issues. Specific issues have included:
o    Alleged neglect by contract winemakers
o    Tainted wine additives or processing agents
o    Damaged wine shipments
o    Disputes between producer and distributor
o    Cork taint and other closure issues
o    Damage to barrels and contents by fire
•    Has conducted masterclasses on Australian, French and Italian wines in Australia, China and Hong Kong.
•    Invited in July 2016 as international expert to advise on grading vineyards and wineries in Ningxia, China.
•    Writes articles for consumers in Gourmet Traveller WINE magazine.
•    Edited Australian Winemaking, a textbook on practical winemaking, published on line by Trivinum Press at and co-authored several chapters. A print run is in preparation.
•    Responsible for all wine selection, both bulk and branded, for virtual winemaker and retailer BackVintage Wines Pty Ltd. Often re-blends bulk wines to improve style and quality.
•    Audits wine show exhibits and entries to check that they have integrity and truly represent the data declared and stock on hand.
•    Contributed to and edited the Australian Society of Viticulture and Oenology’s 2015 ASVO Wine Show Best Practice Recommendations for conducting wine shows.

1999 – 2011    Associate Professor – School of Agricultural and Wine Sciences, Charles Sturt University (visiting position)
•    Taught wine evaluation, which included guiding students through the tasting and evaluation of Australian and imported wines.
•    Critical evaluation of the standard of grape-growing procedures, the winemaking techniques employed and suitability of wines to various segments of the wine market.
•    Analysis of spoilt wines through winemaking errors and unsatisfactory storage conditions.

1996 – present    Hatherleigh Vineyard
Established and manages hands-on his 1 ha vineyard of Pinot noir and Chardonnay in the Southern Tablelands of NSW. Also shares the winemaking, markets and sells the wine.

1978 – present    Director and Shareholder of Brokenwood Wines Pty Ltd
•    Represents the interests of shareholders.
•    Shared the winemaking duties for five vintages and pruned
•    Assists the winemakers in tasting and blending.
•    Involved in strategic planning

1984 – present    Wine judge
    Has judged wine at the Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth and Hobart Wine Shows, many regional Australian wine shows and international shows in New Zealand, Singapore, China and London. He has chaired many of these and in 2019 was Chief Judge at the Orange Wine Show, the Australian Small Winemakers’ Show and in 2018 the Interwine Grand Challenge in Guangzhou, China.

1991 – 1999    Manager - Market Information and Analysis and other positions for Southcorp Wines Pty Ltd, Sydney, responsible for:

•    Strategic developments in brands and via company take-over
•    Analysing the activities of competing companies
•    Briefing, commissioning and operation of an internal wine information system
•    Management of the Marketing Department’s budget
•    Providing a technical link between winemakers and the Marketing Dept.
•    Wine education within Southcorp Wines’ Head Office

1988 – 1991    Wine Manager for Cellarmaster Wines Pty Ltd, responsible for wine selection, quality control and staff education.

1984 - 1988    Self-employed consultant and wine journalist writing on Australian and imported wines for the Sun Herald, The Australian Financial Review, The Sydney Morning Herald, Epicurean magazine and Wine and Spirit magazine.

1985    Won the Charles Heidsieck Award for Excellence in Wine Writing.

1969 – 1984    Experimental Scientist with CSIRO, involved in research in marine biology and chemistry. Published several peer-reviewed scientific papers.

Has appeared on several radio and television programmes on issues involving wine judging and the wine industry.


Australian Society of Viticulture and Oenology
Served as committee member for two years from 1997 to 1999.  Was for eight years the Chairman of the Wine Show Committee, which is coordinating a national approach to assist wine shows in managing growth, performance standards, auditing procedures and quality assurance. Remains a member of that Committee. Audits wine stocks and LIP data for wine show committees.

Wine Communicators Australia (formerly Wine Press Club of New South Wales)
President of the Club for two years from 1985 – 1987 and a committee member for two years prior. This is a forum for exchange of information between wine producers, the wholesale and retail wine trade and wine writers. Was elected a Life Member for services to the Club in 2004. Has presented to the Club at various functions, speaking on wine quality and style.

Australian Grape and Wine

Institute of Masters of Wine

President of the Merino Country Vignerons’ Association


Has been an invited speaker at:
The International Cool Climate Conference, Melbourne 2001
The Australian Wine Industry Technical Conference, 1998, 2004 and 2007
Wine Shows in the 21st Century Conference, at the Len Evans Tutorial Reunion, 2012
Tasting workshops for NSW Department of Primary Industries in 2016 and 2017.
Has conducted many other conferences and seminars for wine producer organisations.
Has conducted masterclasses on Australian wines in Hong Kong and China.