Vignerons. Musicians. Artists. Above all, Dreamers! Dean and Dayna Roberts are the safe hands, open hearts and sore backs behind Lithostylis.
In 2006 with a mixture of trepidation and excitement, Dean and Dayna purchased The Red Dwarf, a small (5.5 acre) established vineyard sited on the red soils of Leongatha’s gently undulating hills. The site ticked all the boxes and a few more besides: climate, soil, varieties, aspect, vine age, planting density, clones. For Dean and Dayna, it was the beginning of yet another adventure!
Dean’s vine and wine experience includes time spent working in the Yarra Valley, Oregon, London, and Gippsland. He asserts that 90% of his “useful” vineyard knowledge came from his tenure as Vineyard Manager at Diamond Valley Vineyards, Yarra Valley. To end up as a Vigneron in Leongatha is somewhat ironic, given his and Dayna’s past attempts to “escape” Gippsland! Dean believes in the “supremacy of site”, but also in the importance of attention to detail in the vineyard.
“The vigneron must remove all obstacles between the site and the bottle.”
Dayna knows every vine on The Red Dwarf. Having spent the last four seasons being guided, encouraged, informed, berated and occasionally threatened with dismissal by Dean, she has developed a keen understanding of viticulture and winemaking. Her capable hands do not stop with vine-tending, however. Her professional career is as an Echocardiographer, in which capacity she has assisted in the healthcare of people in Adelaide, Melbourne, London, India and now Gippsland. Her passion for vine and wine ensure that corners are never cut at Lithostylis (unless Dean is not around!).
Both Dean and Dayna are experienced musicians (Guitar/Vocals and Violin respectively) who are currently playing in Gippsland under the moniker of The Dirt Floor. They are joined by Nathan Belsar on Double Bass and fellow Vigneron Dave Matthews on Percussion. Dave’s family vineyard supplies Chardonnay for the Lithostylis South Gippsland Chardonnay.