Croser, Brian, AO (1949-) has had what can only be described as a stellar career in the Australian wine industry. Having obtained a Bachelor of Agricultural Science degree from the University of Adelaide (in 1969) he was employed by Thomas Hardy, who sponsored his postgraduate degree at the University of California, Davis (the nearby town of Petaluma providing him with the name for his future winery). He returned to become chief winemaker at Thomas Hardy, making a benchmark Siegersdorf Riesling in 1975. He moved again in 1976, to set up the former Riverina College of Advanced Education (now Charles Sturt University) course in wine science and viticulture. That year also saw his establishment of Petaluma. In 1985 he set up a separately owned vineyard and winery (Argyle) in Oregon, which he and his family still own. In 2002 he joined with Jean-Michel Cazes of Chateau Lynch-Bages in Pauillac, Bordeaux, and Société Jacques Bollinger, the parent company of Champagne Bollinger, to establish Tapanappa.
Throughout his adult life he has been a wine show judge and educator; he is a past president of the Winemakers’ Federation of Australia, the Australian Winemaker’s Forum, and the Australian Society of Viticulture and Oenology. He received the prestigious Maurice O’Shea Award in 1997 for his outstanding contribution to the Australian wine industry; he was made an Officer of the Order of Australia in 2000; and he served as deputy chancellor of the University of Adelaide from 1999 to 2008, receiving an Honorary Doctorate in 2007, having much earlier received the same award from Charles Sturt University.