South Australia - Mount Lofty Ranges Zone - Clare Valley

4 important questions on South Australia - Mount Lofty Ranges Zone - Clare Valley

What is unique about the climate of Clare Valley, Australia?

  • It has a warm, moderately continental climate.
  • Located on the northern part of Mount Lofty Ranges.
  • It is warm but tempered by cool afternoon breezes and cold nights
  • Wide diurnal range to slow ripening and retain acidity in the grapes.
  • Rain falls mainly in winter. Dams are build for irrigation.
  • Humidity is low, therefore risk of fungal diseases is low.
  • ideal for Riesling
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Where are the vineyards planted in Clare Valley, Australia

  • At 300-500m above sea level.
  • Various microclimates due to ridges, hills and valleys.
  • White grapes: higher altitude
  • Black grapes: on lower, warmer sites.
  • Mostly machine-harvested
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Which varieties are planted in Clare Valley, Australia. What is special about their growing environment?

  • Black varieties 72%; Shiraz almost half of those; also Cabernet Sauvignon; distinctive mint and eucalyptus.
  • White variety Riesling is well-known, over 25% of total plantings; age-worthy wines
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Clare Valley Riesling is well-known. What makes it so unique?

  • White variety Riesling is over 25% of total plantings
  • Needs to be protected from sunburn; region has intense sunlight and low latitude.
  • Thick canopy needed.
  • Dry fermented with trademark lime aromas
  • Higher acidity than Eden Valley
  • Different soil types:
    • Polish hill: slate, low in fertility, less aromatic, flintier style, develops honey and toast.
    • Watervale: limestone soils, more fertile, more aromatic, floral style.
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