Born to a well-credentialled wine family, Freya has an adventurous streak that inspired her to take off to France after school, determined not to work in the wine industry. Ironically, she discovered her love of winemaking while overseas and returned to Australia to study wine in Adelaide, graduating as Dux of Oenology in 2001.
Now back in the bosom of her Margaret River community, Freya has two sons with partner Ryan Walsh, also a winemaker. Since 2014 she’s specialised in crafting premium, regional wines under the banner of Once & Well, sold exclusively through Dan Murphy’s and BWS stores. Intensely passionate in her approach to life and work (and Chardonnay!), she balances her two loves: family and wine, managing to take time out for ocean swimming, trail running, camping with her boys and the great outdoors.
Having grown up playing among the vineyards of Cape Mentelle, watching her father David Hohnen build one of Australia’s most iconic wine brands, she’s since worked in numerous high-profile wineries in South Australia and Western Australia. Freya is equally at home in her work boots tending to wines and fronting up as the well-coiffed PR face of Once & Well.
She’s an innovator, a nurturer and a collaborator who lives by a set of strong principles: celebrating life and quality experiences, being true to herself, supporting her community, and most of all being kind to her craft and all the people who come into her gentle orbit.
‘Do it once and do it well’ is a mantra my father lived and made wine by. It’s an outlook that to this day guides me in my endeavours.