Meet the team

HQ/Operations

Rod

Director / 16 years

Alongside family, Rod has many loves: making customers’ celebrations special; working next to his dynamic team; seeing projects come to life; and jumping into the kitchen on weekends. Since 2005 he’s worked to establish us as a YV destination, launched Zonzo wine after acquiring the vineyard, introduced new buildings Stables and Cappella, and recently completed the design/build of our new Lilydale winery. Fun fact: Rod met his wife at Zonzo, proposed there and got married on the grounds. In rare spare moments, he rides motorbikes.

Recommends Pizza Bianco con Cime di Rapa and curling up by a fire on a wintery night with a glass of Reserve Shiraz.

Amber

Personal Assistant to Rod / 10 years

Amber started as casual wait staff for a summer job 9 years ago, and today she makes things happen. She helped start Zonzo’s wine label in 2014 and loves how each exciting project keeps her on her toes. In her free time Amber loves camping. Little known fact: she has owned her horse Max since she was 12 years old.

Recommends the Gnocchi and sipping on Lemon, Thyme and Honey Gin on a warm afternoon.

Victoria

Marketing & Social Media Co-ordinator / 6 years

Victoria loves working in beautiful surrounds around awesome people — it makes it easy to be inspired every day. Heard Zonzo ads on the radio? That’s her handiwork. When she's not at Zonzo you might find Victoria riding and training her two horses, or reading a good book. Fun fact: she’s an only child.

Recommends her absolute favourite thing on the menu, Pizza con Carciofi (on a gluten free base); drinking Cab Sav at dinner with loved ones, ideally in front of a roaring fire.

Rita

Marketing / 7 years

Rita's journey started in the restaurant years ago, so she's basically part of the furniture (but not as vintage as Adolfo). These days she’s in marketing/brand/design comms and photography, with creative freedom to bring projects like Zonzo's first TVC to life. In her spare time she watches her plants grow new leaves. Fun fact: Rita speaks fluent Arabic.

Recommends the crowd-pleasing, always delicious Pizza Bianco con Patate; for a blissful evening, Pinot while watching your fave show (hers is Australian Survivor).

Emma

Admin Coordinator / 2.5 years

Emma loves coming to work every day to hang with her supportive team. In her free time she takes her dog for walks on the beach. She also loves a glass of Moscato with friends at a park picnic. Fun fact: She was an Irish Dancer for 20 years.

Recommends Pizza Bianco con Pollo and visiting Zonzo on a cold winter day, when you can enjoy the warmth of the fireplace with your pizza and wine.

Kyah

Training and Admin Coordinator / 2.5 years

Kyah started in the Zonzo Restaurant as a waitress at the end of 2016 for a year and a half before heading off overseas to live for a few years. Upon her return to Zonzo she has been able to assist in the training and education of wait staff, something she finds very rewarding. When she’s not at Zonzo Kyah loves to make cocktails for her friends and traveling. Fun Fact: Kyah has lived in 3 cities (Melbourne, New York and London).

She recommends her favourite item on the menu; the Tiramisu, and visiting Zonzo on an Autumn day with friends to enjoy a glass (or two) of the Cab Sav.

Farm & Winery

Caroline

Winemaker / 8 years

Caroline's wine journey started in Yarra Valley, took her to South Australia, then France (with a stint in cheesemaking) and back. Alongside her team Caroline brings to fruition a dream of designing her own winery and experimenting with interesting varietals. One day she’ll design our future vineyard. When not making delicious wine, Caroline loves drinking it with amazing food.

Recommends the slow cooked lamb and everything in the Scoperta Range.

Jeff

Assistant Winemaker / 1 year

Jeff loves working in a beautiful modern winery, where the winemaking approach is traditional and hands on. He has really enjoyed being able to explore and experiment with the Italian varieties in our Scoperta range. When Jeff isn’t at Zonzo, he loves to go camping by the coast, and spend time with his kids. Fun fact: Jeff is an ice hockey player.

He recommends his favourite thing on the Menu the Ravioli Con Granchio; and enjoying a glass of cab sav on a Saturday afternoon with some mates, and the footy on.


Phil

Viticulturist / 2 years

Phil loves being in the middle of Yarra Valley with its undulating slopes facing several directions, perfect for premium winemaking. His favourite time of year is Autumn: vines and trees on the property are resplendent, with vibrant hues of crimson and gold; falling leaves signify the end of another season. Fun fact: Phil once brunched with Justin Timberlake, Julianne Moore and Samuel L. Jackson in NY (okay, not the same table but in the same room at the same time!)

Recommends the woodfire oven roasted sardine fillets, with olive oil, chilli and lemon; drinking Reserve Chardonnay at a home bbq with friends.

Graham

Farmhand / 20 years

Graham might just be the best person in Yarra Valley to turn Zonzo into a working farm. Not only has he tended to our land for 40 years, he's lived on the same Yarra Valley property for 50. In his free time Graham loves to get away to the Bay for some fishing.

Recommends Pizza alla Salciccia and bringing friends to the grounds, to enjoy a glass of Cab Sav whilst soaking up the Autumn views.

Steve

Lawn Lover/Grounds Keeper / 7 years

Steve loves getting to work outside in a beautiful setting with a great team of people. He is the man responsible for our beautiful lawns and works hard to keep them looking luscious. He is also quite the handyman and built the wedding signing table in the Cappella, where couples sign their marriage certificates. When he’s not at Zonzo, Steve enjoys going fishing, bike riding and spending time with his family. Fun Fact: he plays the guitar.

Recommends the Ravioli Con Granchio and loves to remind people to save room for the lamb on the Festa Menu.

Matt

Groundskeeper / 5 years

Matt’s favourite part about working at Zonzo are the views!  He has worked on countless projects to keep the property looking beautiful, including the building of the bluestone wall near the Cappella. In his spare time Matt enjoys going for walks and spending time with his partner and friends. Fun Fact: He plays competitive lawn bowls.

He recommends his favourite pizza on the Menu; the Salsiccia and visiting Zonzo on a Spring day to enjoy the new growth, with a gin and tonic in hand made with the Orange and Rosemary gin.

Weddings

Lauren

Senior Wedding Coordinator / 3 years

You can’t keep Lauren away from Zonzo. She started in the Zonzo Weddings team in 2015 before leaving to further her skills and returned in 2021 to run the department. She loves getting to work with a wonderful team of people, and has really enjoyed the opportunity to improve internal processes and streamline operations. When she’s not running weddings, she enjoys brunching and drinking cocktails with her friends. Fun fact: she can play three musical instruments (piano, saxophone and flute)

She recommends her favourite item on the Menu; Burrata Con Bresaola and drinking our Bellini on a sunny day with friends.


Restaurant

Adolfo

Manager / 15 years

The one thing Adolfo loves most about working at Zonzo is his team, having been around since the very beginning to help grow it. Outside Zonzo his two faves are eating at new restaurants (he loves food) and going to the footy.

Recommends Zonzo Vodka or Reserve Cab Sav; if he has to choose, he’ll order both; a winter visit to Zonzo to catch up with old friends.

Salvatore

Restaurant & Function Manager / 8 years

For Sal, the best part about working at Zonzo is meeting all the people who visit. Hospitality is in his blood. When not greeting guests with a big smile, Sal keeps it low key and enjoys hanging out with his tight-knit group of friends and on quieter nights, watching movies.

Recommends Ravioli con Granchio and visiting Zonzo on a warm Summer day to relax with friends or family.

Tharindu

Assistant Restaurant Manager / 5.5 years

Tharindu loves being part of a dedicated team pushing to go the extra mile. When he’s not in the restaurant training new staff you’ll find him tending to his garden and veggie patch. On a cool evening you’ll catch him drinking Pinot by the firepit with his wife. Fun fact: he was a violin virtuoso in high school.

Recommends Ravioli con Granchio and coming to Zonzo on a Spring day to enjoy the fresh air with loved ones.

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