|The higher altitudes and slower ripening climes of King Valley are a blessing to wine growers. Some of the more fortuitous sites boast soils and aspects which are nothing short of idyllic, yielding harvests of vibrant Cabernet Sauvignon. Gracebrook»|
|Watershed's superior vineyards span across an immense area of the choicest soils on Margaret River, the best eighty hectares were established from the ground up, with a view to vintage the most spectacular wines in the Australian west, the finest parcels of estate grown Cabernet Sauvignon are assembled for the Awakening. . Watershed»|
|An eminent Cabernet wine which can lay claim to coveted accolades such as Blue Gold Sydney International and Gold Concours Mondial de Bruxelles. Jacobs Creek retain South Australia's finest vineyards and aim to improve the quality of wine every year. Jacobs Creek»|
|Howard Park is internationally feted as one of the new world's great Riesling wines, achieving superstar status after claiming highly coveted gold medal at the prestigious London International. Riesling was Howard Park's first vintage, it remains the Australian west's most enduring white after over three decades of superlative editions. Howard Park»|
|The seemingly countless, memorable vintages of Delatite have claimed a litany of trophies, accolades and rave reviews throughout the world of wine. Her first vines were planted in 1968 on a picturesque rise overlooking the vistas of Mt Buller. Delatite»|
|Enthused by a consuming desire to make great wine, Andrew Nugent honed his craft as viticulturalist and winemaker amongst the vines of McLaren Vale before returning to the Adelaide Hills, where he established his very own wineworks at Woodside. Hand crafted from fruit grown to mineral rich soils above the historic Bird in Hand gold mine, a pure Pinot Noir with superb effervescence, dominated by red berry characters, adorned by a lift of stonefruits and floral.. Bird In Hand»|
|Saint Clair continue to deliver Marlborough's most internationally lauded Sauvignon Blanc. The winemaking team are on a perpetual odyssey, to isolate and retain Marlborough's finest harvests, capable of producing wines with intense regionality. Saint Clair»|
|The marvelous S1 block is a sheltered, relatively warm site within the splendid vistas of Seaview Vineyard, on a north facing plateau at 160m above sea level, refreshed by maritime winds that blow in from the Cludy Bay coast. Fruit is crushed and destemmed, chilled and gently pressed, the clearest juices are racked off for a long, cool ferment to capture the full opulence of S1 vineyard grapes on the vine. Yealands Estate»|
|Blue Pyrenees were established through a no expense spared approach, by two of the wine world's most revered, accomplished and resourced estates. A superior standard of viticulture and exacting vinification techniques were the priority, they remain at the very core of the Blue Pyrenees raison d'être. Blue Pyrenees»|
|Bridgeland is one of the most picturesque properties in Margaret River. Originally prime farmland, it boasts one of the largest dams in the region, approximately a kilometre in length and covering eighteen hectares. Streicker»|
|Brookland Valley Estate made a conspiuous impression through their stirling efforts at Cabernet Merlot when they claimed several significant trophies, including the hotly contested Qantas Best Wine of Show. Expressing fully the generous palate structure and aromatic richness of the stylish Margaret River Cab Merlot accord, beautifully perfumed, bramble flavoured wine, brimming with the quality and elegance which has earned Brookland Valley Estate a five star reputation. Brookland Valley»|
|All Saints store their ageing fortifieds in the Great Hall, an area of a castle built in the 1880s, lined with huge 100-year-old oak casks, filled with rare wines. Some of these fortified wines are up to eighty years old and form the base of the rich fortified All Saints blends. All Saints»|
Mount Camel Ridge
Mount Camel Ridge
The key to great wines is great vineyards worked by dedicated growers
Mount Camel Ridge Estate is situated on the eastern face at the cooler, south end of the Mount Camel Range 17km north of Heathcote in Central Victoria. The objective is to produce wine of beauty and finesse that reflects the terroir, the grape variety, the vintage and the site from which they came.
The site is gently sloping and therefore well drained. It faces east to receive the early morning sun, invaluable during years of frost, ensuring the vines are not affected. In summer the vines are sheltered from the hot western sun in the late afternoon by the higher part of the hill. The soil is predominantly Cambrian, with small pockets of red and black clay, hill wash and rock. Thus blocks are planted to different soil types and at varying elevations.
The vines at Mount Camel Ridge yield Shiraz 45%, Cabernet Sauvignon 25%, Merlot 20%; the remainder consists of Viognier, Petit Verdot and Mourvedre. Clones have been selected with the intention to produce a northern Rhone style Shiraz and a Bordeaux style Cabernet Sauvignon within the Australian context. The property is 49 hectares and 18 hectares is under vine, although not all is as yet productive.
The land had always been a sheep property and had never been cropped. After aquiring the site, Gwenda and Ian Langford embarked on a programme of mulching to achieve maximum soil structure, initially by spreading chicken manure. Since then, a seaweed fertiliser has been applied and all prunings are mulched back into the rows annually. The property benefits from the prevailing winds along the ridge, hence copper or lime sulphur fungicide are never utilized. As a result of intensive work worms are reappearing, there is now an extensive frog population, along with ladybirds and other invertebrates, not to mention a range of beautiful spiders.
The grapes ripen evenly and in beautiful condition so there is no adjustment of pH. The vines are cane pruned, the number of buds are kept to what is deemed appropriate for each, with low yields as the aim (approximately one tonne per acre). It is a dryland vineyard and drippers have never been installed. The grapes are hand picked, fermented naturally in 500kg open vats, hand plunged, basket pressed and matured in French oak (new 25%). The wine is racked two to three times during the fifteen to twenty months maturation and is lightly fined but not filtered.
Given the natural balance and flavours these wines are attractive when young. Mount Camel Ridge will benefit from cellaring, but high quality wine should be attractive at any age.