Meet the Team

Shadowfax’s engine room is made up of some highly motivated, talented and dedicated staff members who help make everything run like clockwork.

From our vineyard team who work tirelessly throughout the year; our wonderful green thumb Ruby who tends our Kitchen Garden; our friendly Cellar Door staff who look after everyone that passes through our doors with good food and wine; our team of passionate chefs who love to create exceptional food using local seasonal produce; and last our army of exceptional growers, brewers, distillers and suppliers who all help to make Shadowfax what it is.

Alister Timms

Winemaker & Vineyard Manager

No stranger to the world of winemaking, Alister grew up on his family’s vineyards on the Bellarine Peninsula, planting vines at the age of 10.

With a science degree from Melbourne University, Alister went on to study Oenology at the University of Adelaide and graduated in 2001.

Shortly after completing this second degree, Alister started working at Shadowfax as Assistant Winemaker, a position he held for three years before moving back home to run his family’s winery Kilgour Estate.

In 2008, Alister returned to Shadowfax to manage the winery’s vineyards and establish the Little Hampton property in the Macedon Ranges, whilst working as Assistant Winemaker. Less than 10 years later, in October 2017, Alister became Chief Winemaker.

Matt Large

Assistant Winemaker & Vineyard Assistant

Matt has been an integral part of the winemaking team at Shadowfax for almost six years. During his time at the winery, he has spent many vintages overseas building his knowledge and skills, and has an ongoing winemaking role in Barolo, Italy.

With a Bachelor of Wine Science from Charles Sturt University under his belt, Matt has never looked back and works tirelessly to solidify Shadowfax as one the Macedon Ranges’ premier Chardonnay and Pinot Noir producers.

He is passionate about cool-climate, high-altitude winemaking and viticulture, and has a keen interest in sustainable, biological viticultural practices to produce wines that are a pure expression of site.

Simon Langton

Assistant Winemaker & Vineyard Assistant

Simon has been a regular fixture in the winery at Shadowfax since he left school in 2006. After gaining invaluable experience and wine knowledge working at Langton’s Fine Wine Auctions, Simon realised his passion for winemaking and became a permanent part of the Shadowfax team.

When Simon’s not working hard in the winery or vineyards, he’s travelling the world to do vintage at wineries in New Zealand, America and Europe. His latest stints include Vinlink in Marlborough NZ and William Selyem Sonoma in California.

Phil Strachan

General Manager

Originally from Aberdeen in Scotland, Phil has lived and travelled around most of Europe and South America finally moving to Australia in 2006.

After studying Business and Accountancy at the University of Westminster, Phil worked in Public Practice and the digital animation industry in the UK.

Following numerous trips to the great wineries surrounding Melbourne, Phil embarked on a career in the wine industry spending six years at Langton’s Auctions as the Finance Manager before taking the position of General Manager at Shadowfax in 2013.

A family man with two children, Phil loves all sports, especially Scottish football (the round ball).

Ben D’Arcy

Head Chef

Having worked in some of Melbourne’s leading restaurants and hotels including The Stokehouse, Becco, The Argo, Lindrum and Le Meridian for the past 14 years, Ben’s skills in the kitchen are highly tuned.

With great adaptability and dedication to creating high-quality dishes using the best available seasonal produce, Ben knows how to produce great produce and is thriving in his role as Head Chef of Shadowfax, a position he has held since early 2012.

Matthew Ehmke

Restaurant & Cellar Door Manager

Matthew’s hospitality career has spanned 14 years and through hard work, determination and a great deal of talent, he has worked at some of the finest restaurants and wineries in Victoria.

Working under many successful restaurateurs, winemakers and managers in the industry, Matthew spent 10 years in various front of house positions at The Rocks in Mornington, Montalto Vineyard and Ten Minutes By Tractor in Red Hill, Donovans and Richmond Hill Café & Larder.

In 2011, Matthew moved to Melbourne and refined his craft at St Kilda’s landmark restaurant, Donovans, before moving on to Stephanie Alexander’s Richmond Hill Cafe and Larder.

Overseeing the busy restaurant and cellar door, Matthew has established Shadowfax as one of Melbourne’s must-experience food and wine destinations.

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