Virgin Australia Unveils New Custom Wine Blend

2 March 2017

Virgin Australia is the latest major airline to offer new tweaks to their service in the name of refining the passenger experience. They have now teamed up with Barossa Valley winery St Hallett to offer an exclusive wine that has been specifically blended for enjoyment at high altitude.

The new wine has been named The Duo and it will be served exclusively on board Virgin Australia flights in Business Class. It will also be available for sampling in Virgin Australia lounges.

Virgin Australia worked with St Hallett winemaker, Shelley Cox over several months to compose a wine that would work with the environmental shifts that come with high altitudes such as atmospheric pressure and drier air conditions. All of these factors can affect the taste of food and beverages when flying. This new customised wine focuses on delivering balanced acidity and texture even at 30,000 feet up.

A Virgin Australia flight attendant holding a bottle of wine The new Virgin Australia wine blend was sourced from the Barossa and Eden Valleys

Sourced from the Barossa and Eden Valleys, the blend was developed to work with the food featured on the Business Class menu designed by Luke Mangan.

"The drier air in the cabin can make it hard to really capture a wine's aroma, " said Ms Cox. "This is where the Eden Valley component comes in. The higher altitude of the Eden Valley means cooler conditions that create Shiraz with lovely overt floral aromas. You only need a small component to really lift a whole blend," said Ms Cox.

"We played around with a lot of different options to ensure the acid and texture balance was right. It was a great experience and we are confident the wine will deliver in both taste and aroma on the plane at altitude."

While some airlines have chosen wines based on their characteristics at altitude, Virgin believes this is the first blend specifically created to suit high altitude conditions.

Virgin Australia's General Manager In-Flight Experience, Tash Tobias, said, "Our team is always searching for wasy to deliver an outstanding experience for our guests on board. We are thrilled to bring the best of the Barossa to our guests travelling in Business Class and will continue to work with leading industry players to improve the in-flight experience."

The new blend will feature on board Virgin Australia aircraft and in Virgin Australia lounges from today. 

Carlie Tucker

Travelling is for discovering the unexpected. From fantastic meals in ramshackle joints to stumbling upon a best kept secret, I love those fortuitous travel moments that couldn't be planned if I tried.