Dalwhinnie vineyard is situated in a unique amphitheatre that has its own meso climate. The site is totally frost free and allows the fruit to reach complete physiological ripeness in 9 out of 10 years which is very important in establishing a long term premium label.
The climate is classified as temperate with a mean average January temperature of 21C. Harvest, which is carried out by hand, usually starts the third week in March and is completed around the first week in May. The annual rainfall is 550mm with most rain falling in July through to November.
The vineyard is situated on the 37th parallel south and the poor and fragile soils from left over alluvial mining areas in the early 1800's are some of the hardest and hungriest you will ever see. However, the climate and soils seem well suited to the production of complex shiraz and that is why we specialize in this great variety.
The first plantings in 1976 were the cabernet sauvignon contour block and the grand piano shiraz block, these were rootlings sourced from Sunraysia Nurseries in Mildura. Follow up plantings in 1977 included the "Eagle Series" shiraz block and the cabernet sauvignon cellar door block. The chardonnay was planted in 1980 and subsequent plantings took place in 1988, 1993, 1995 and 1997.
In addition to Dalwhinnie vineyard we have an 8 hectare vineyard situated on Taltarni Road named 'Forest Hut'. This vineyard was planted in 1999 which is an addition to our Pinot Noir vineyard that was planted in 1989. 'The Hut' range of wines are sourced from these vineyards.
This vineyard is dedicated to mainly shiraz with four different clones planted and also a small amount of viognier and sangiovese for blending options in the future.
The vineyard is designed for separate vinification of clones to assess flavour profiles and clonal performance. Once again this vineyard is dry land farmed with a VSP canopy.
The vineyard is strictly non-irrigated and our emphasis continues to lean strongly towards organic viticulture. The vineyard is now set up utilizing a vertical shoot positioned canopy (VSP).
The introduction of new and improved clones of the grape varieties already planted is part of the ongoing viticultural program which we believe is improving the complexity of the wines.