The 'two hands' are Michael Twelftree and Richard Mintz who formed the company in 1999 with the clear objective of making the best possible shiraz based wines from prized shiraz producing regions within Australia.
Michael Twelftree, initially from a construction background, spent a number of years exporting Australian wine to USA and Asia. Richard Mintz, a chartered accountant, was formerly CEO of one of Australia's leading cooperages in the Barossa Valley, South Australia. With Twelftree’s contacts and wine savvy approach and Mintz’s management skills and business acumen, the two old friends decided to make some wine together.
In 2000 they started with just 17 tonnes of fruit from the McLaren Vale and Padthaway wine regions. From the beginning the wines were very well received at home and abroad with a healthy stream of reviews, culminating in 2004 with Robert M. Parker pronouncing Two Hands as "the finest negociant operation south of the equator".
The heart of the operation is based in the Barossa Valley; the cellar door and winery are located in the sub district of Marananga. Opened in December 2003, the cellar door is already regarded as one of the highlights of the region with its contemporary interior design and commitment to providing guests with an educational and personal wine experience. The Marananga winery was officially opened in November 2004, designed specifically for small batch production of the very best parcels of fruit.
Since the winery opened, Two Hands sucess has gone from strength to strength with numerous accolades defining the culture of the organisation. Two Hands Wines were listed in the Wine Spectator Top 100 for the last five years with two listings in the top 10, most recently the 2005 Bella's Garden Barossa Valley Shiraz at #5 and The Ares voted one of the 25 Benchmark Wines of Australia. Consistent 90+ reviews from Robert Parker Jnr's Wine Advocate, Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar, James Halliday's Wine Companion, Wine Spectator and the UK Decanter magazine is further testament to the company's ability to capture the terroir of each vineyard and carefully nurture the characteristics of each parcel.
Two Hands continues to extend its distribution around the world, branching out from the Australian domestic and United States of America markets to now include the export markets of the United Kingdom, Asia, Canada, New Zealand and the European Union. Two Hands Wines are eagerly awaited, the markets and consumers demonstrating a thirst for top end Australian wine, in particular shiraz from South Australian wine regions.