Mount Pleasant Wines

Our History

The history of Mount Pleasant goes hand in hand with the history of Modern Australian winemaking. Established in 1921 by legendary winemaker Maurice O’Shea, ours is a story of genuine pride, perfectionism and our very special place.


1880

The Old Hill Vineyard is planted by Charles King on rich, volcanic soil with a number of varietals, including the Shiraz we still harvest to this day.

1897

Our founder and legendary winemaker, Maurice O’Shea, is born in North Sydney.

1914

Maurice O’Shea travels to France where he would spend the next 6 years studying Viticulture and Oenology at France’s Montpellier University. He would go on to lecture at Montpellier University before returning to Australia.

1921

Maurice O’Shea – with his mother Léontine and brother Jack, purchase Old Hill vineyard and two adjoining parcels of land. O’Shea names the property Mount Pleasant and plants a new vineyard: Old Paddock.

1921

O’Shea plants Mount Pleasant’s Mothervine Pinot Noir. Today it represents Australia’s oldest Pinot Noir vineyard.

1939

O’Shea purchases land which would one day become the Lovedale vineyard. It is sequestered for the war effort by the Australian government and won’t be planted for another six years.

1945

O’Shea purchases Rosehill vineyard.

1946

Rosehill and Lovedale vineyards are planted.

1950

The first vintage of Lovedale is released.

1956

Maurice O’Shea passes away and is replaced as chief winemaker by Brian Walsh.

1965

Rosehill vineyard is extended by Brian Walsh who maintains its commitment to Shiraz. Thanks to improvements in trellising, additional blocks are planted more closely together.

1978

Phil Ryan is appointed Mount Pleasant Chief Winemaker.

1987

The first Maurice O’Shea Shiraz is released.

1990

The inaugural Maurice O’Shea awards is held in tribute to our founder.

2004

The 2000 vintage of our flagship Maurice O’Shea Shiraz outscores Penfolds Grange and Henschke Hill of Grace. It is honoured as the highest rated Shiraz in James Halliday’s Australian Wine Companion.

2009

Chief Winemaker Phil Ryan is awarded the Hunter Valley Living Legend award for his extraordinary services and contribution to the region and winemaking.

2013

Phil Ryan retires and Jim Chatto is appointed Chief Winemaker.

2017

Mount Pleasant is awarded winery of the year in the 2017 Halliday Wine Companion.

2018

Adrian Sparks is appointed Chief Winemaker. He remains today only the fifth Chief Winemaker in our 100 year history.

2019

Adrian Sparks is named the Hunter Valley Winemaker of the Year at the Hunter Valley Wine Industry Gala.

2020

Devastating bushfires blanket the Hunter Valley with smoke.

2021

Marks the celebration of our centenary.
Our flagship Maurice O’Shea Shiraz is awarded 99 points by world-renowned wine critic James Halliday.