First Choice Liquor Market

Celebrating Women in Liquor

We couldn’t be prouder of the steps that have been made for women, especially in the viticultural sector over the past decades. With so many women making waves in the liquor industries, from gins to whiskies and wines, we’re taking a minute to share celebrate these incredible ladies of liquor.

first choice liquor market celebrates women in liquor

Meet: Trina Smith – Jacob’s Creek (A.J Range)

Trina Smith is one of Australia’s most senior winemakers, presiding over a complex portfolio of quality white and sparkling wine that gets shipped to all corners of the globe. Trina started her sparkling winemaker career with Brown Brothers, before moving to Senior Sparkling Winemaker with Treasury Wine Estates prior to her current role with Pernod Ricard Winemakers as Group White and Sparkling Winemaker.


Most recently, she has launched the A.J Range which is inspired by Ann Jacob who was one of the earliest female landowners in Australia and the first person to plant vines in the Barossa, which still thrive as part of the Jacob’s Creek vineyards today. Like many other women who have worked to produce wine in South Australia, her significant contribution to the wine industry is frequently overlooked. And so, as a reminder and celebration of the diverse fabric that makes the Barossa so special – A.J. was created. Wines of exceptional varietal character. Fruit-forward with silky smooth texture and bright, delicate aromatics A.J. invites everyone to savour and celebrate an undiscovered side of the Barossa.

Meet: Helen McCarthy – St Hallett

Most winemakers only dream of the kind of career Helen McCarthy has carved out. Now, at the top of her game, she’s leading the charge for sustainable viticulture and innovative winemaking at an iconic Barossa winery – St Hallett. ‘My wine philosophy is to get it right in the vineyard. Then you are basically just a steward as it comes through the winery.’ – Helen McCarthy


Helen’s journey as a winemaker has seen her work with famous brands in world-renowned wine regions. However, the calling of the Barossa became too strong and saw Helen return to a Barossa winery at the end of 2011. Helen joined St Hallett Wines in 2019 and enjoys working with fruit grown all over the Barossa, but particularly Eden Valley fruit.

Meet: Courtney Treacher – Houghton

Courtney joined the Houghton Wine Company as a Cellar Hand at its Middle Swan site in 2004, before climbing the ranks and being appointed the Winemaker/Manager of the Houghton Nannup Winery and as the winemaker responsible for Brookland Valley wines in 2013. Working in these roles she has had the opportunity to work with fruit sourced from all of the major viticultural regions of Western Australia and had the pleasure of making wines from premium hand-picked fruit. 


Courtney continues to enjoy being a part of a dynamic winemaking team and the challenge of making wines of varied styles under the Houghton, Brookland Valley, Moondah Brook, Goundrey, and Amberley ranges.

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