Adelaide Hills Winegrowing
Although grapes were planted as early as 1839, it was not until 1979 that viticulture was revived in the Adelaide Hills. Over the last three decades the Adelaide Hills has built a reputation as one of Australia's most exciting cool climate regions producing distinctive, refined and elegant wines. Today there are more than 95 producers and over 4000 hectares of vineyards.
Located in the Mt Lofty Ranges thirty minutes drive from Adelaide, the Adelaide Hills forms a narrow corridor 70 kilometres long and 30 kilometres wide. The undulating topography offers a wide diversity of vineyard sites. The elevation varies from around 400 metres at Macclesfield, to 600 metres at Piccadilly and 700 metres at Mt Lofty. This region is strikingly beautiful with its patchwork of vineyards, forests, beef and dairy farms, apple and pear orchards.
The Adelaide Hills is bordered to the north by the Barossa and Eden Valleys with McLaren Vale to the South. Due to its altitude, the Adelaide Hills is significantly cooler than these more traditional regions - on average 4°C cooler during the day and 8°C at night. The cool, dry summer and autumn ripening conditions produces grapes with ideal fruit composition, in terms of concentration, spectrum of flavour and natural acidity.
Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay are particularly well suited to the cool conditions of the region and produce some of Australia's finest examples. Shiraz, Riesling and Pinot Noir are equally impressive, but careful site selection and yield management are essential.