Mark Warner and Alicia Basa are Borachio, one of the new Australian producers about whom we’re most excited. They’re originally city kids from Sydney who were very into great food and wine, but then Mark met James Erskine of Jauma at a natural wine fair; James promptly hired Mark as a harvest hand for 2015. Mark then became assistant winemaker at Jauma the year after. Having permanently moved out to Basket Range in the Adelaide Hills, Mark and Alicia also tried their hand at a small amount of their own wine in 2016, to the tune of one barrel and a few demijohns.

Each year Mark and Alicia have scaled up by a few tons, putting any money from sales back into equipment and grapes. In 2020, Mark left the Jauma team to focus full-time on Borachio with Alicia. The pair took over James’ former winery in Basket Range after the latter moved his winery to his own farm, where he’d been in the process of converting an old sheep shearing shed on the property to a winery. All of vineyards Mark and Alicia now source come from organically-farmed vineyards in the areas of Mount Compass and Mount Torrens, approximately 10ha total of varying yields.

We’re so happy that, poco a poco, this process has worked out for Mark and Alicia—they’re immensely talented and their wines scream out of the glass: hazy, zippy, punk, but also with delineated shape and length. These aren’t the natural wines of hobbyists who aren’t attentive nor interested in quality: they’re those of two people who will work seventy-hour weeks if it means making beautiful, clean, delicious wines. Don’t let the outrageous (perfect) labels fool you: there’s serious work here. We love Borachio and can’t wait to see what the next ten years hold for these Jura-loving, design-savvy, absolute legend winemakers.


‘Battered Sav’

Varietal: Chardonnay, Savagnin

Color: White

Farming Practice: Organic

Organic. 75% Chardonnay, 25% Savagnin. Fruit comes from the very sandy soils of the Fleurieu Peninsula. Whole-cluster pressed, some co-fermentation, fermented to nearly dry in stainless steel, then moved to various old barrels for a rest. On barrels for this cuvée, Mark says, “225, 300 and 500L. If I had my way the barrels would be BIGGGGER, but we work with what we got.” Unfined, unfiltered, no added SO2. This is an extraordinary wine, unlike many others in Australia, that approximates the prettiest versions of ouillé styles of whites in the Jura—Céline Gormally of Les Dolomies is one of Mark and Alicia’s favorite winemakers; you can see the reference here.

‘Flat Out’

Varietal: Merlot, Pinot Gris

Color: Red

Farming Practice: Organic

Organic. 60% Merlot, 40% Pinot Gris. Fruit comes from the very sandy soils of the Fleurieu Peninsula (Mark says, “SAND SAND SAND”). Carbonic maceration in stainless steel tanks, with fermentation lasting a bit over a week; blended together after ferment. Unfined, unfiltered, zero SO2 added. Notes of dark strawberry compote, stewed plums, black tea, fresh herbs. It’s light red, it’s dark rosé—chill it down and get ‘flat out like a lizard drinking.’


Varietal: Savagnin

Color: White

Farming Practice: Organic

Organic. 100% Savagnin. From the Mount Compass vineyard, a very sandy-soiled site with relatively high rainfall—Mark says the site is frequently conflated with the McLaren Vale but has a cooler and more coastal feel. Whole-cluster pressed, fermented in stainless steel, then moved to various old barrels for around six months of rest. Unfined, unfiltered, zero SO2 added. Another homage from Borachio to the limestone-y Jura, but viewed through the salty, cool lens of this pocket of the Adelaide Hills. Elegant. Borachio’s notes: “For whatever reason I’ve always been drawn to the salty side of life, maybe growing up on a peninsula, being naughty kids hooning around in tinnies, going fishing, getting as much hot chips as you had loose change, ripping oysters of the rocks… yeah, makes perfect sense when I write it down.”

Rosé Pétillant Naturel ‘Pash Rash’

Varietal: Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, Chardonnay

Color: Sparkling

Farming Practice: Organic

Organic. 40% Pinot Noir, 40% Pinot Gris, 20% Chardonnay. Fruit comes from the very sandy soils of the Fleurieu Peninsula. The grapes are foot-stomped, then pressed off into stainless steel tank for co-ferment; it’s bottled with some RS to enable it to become a pét-nat in bottle. Unfined, unfiltered, zero SO2 added. Mark’s notes on it are as follows: “It’s like, they start off as a nice-enough kid, a little rough and tumble. Then, they get into punk, 6 shots of mezcal and a fist full of acid. Don’t like it? Your problem!” Bright funky strawberry fruit, charred herbs, round palate—a salty, fruity, bitter bomb.