A very early start to vintage. Picking Grenache in February is unheard of. There was virtually no rainfall throughout the growing season at all. Fortunately following the last significant rain event in late July (pre-budburst), the soil moisture levels were at full capacity. Drought tolerant varieties that we choose to work with like Grenache and Nero dÁvola handled the conditions beautifully. In general the growing season was relatively mild, excessive (+35C) heat days were not significant and the fruit ripened sublimely with good flavour and natural acidity.


A relatively dry / windy spring lead up to an exceptionally hot January. Fortunately, a significant rain event in early February rehydrated the vines beautifully. Without the rain I have no doubt it would have been a challenging year. Following the rain, the weather for the rest of vintage was mild and perfect for ripening fruit.

We were the only ones in the vineyard at 5:30am the day we had scheduled in to pick the Nero. The pickers had buggered off to appear as extra’s in Russel Crowes “Water Diviner”.  We are eternally grateful to Rusty for getting the footage he needed in one day, and we got our pickers back the following day.


An awesome growing season for The Vale and the surrounding Adelaide Hills. Mild days, cool nights, negligible rainfall resulted in minimal disease pressure and a slow and steady berry flavour development / maturation. As close to ideal as it gets. A vintage whose wine’s we expect to age gracefully for some years to come.

The Vintage for 2012

Was a cracker! Excellent sub-soil moisture as a result from a wet 2011 winter meant that vines showed no signs of stress throughout the growing season. Warm dry conditions resulted in healthy, ripe fruit that was bursting with excellent flavour intensity at lower than normal baumes.