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. 

the vineyards

Ludo 2012 2013 2014

Roussanne, Marsanne, Viognier

Fruit for the Ludo blend is sourced entirely from the Leconfield’s Little Road block, just off the Main Road north of Willunga. The vineyard has a gentle west facing aspect and sits on free draining loam containing shale to a depth of 400-600mm over orange/red clay, the vines are approximately 12 years old. Row orientation is east west and Leigh Harding’s  excellent  canopy management ensures the bunches have adequate light exposure to ripen them gently and evenly. The fruit has excellent flavour balance whilst retaining critical natural acidity.

Treadlie 2012 2013 2014

Grenache, Mouvedre, Shiraz

Treadlie is sourced entirely from “The Don’s” (Don Oliver) Seaview Road vineyard north of McLaren Vale township. The vineyard is located on top of a ridge and row orientation is north and south giving the vines excellent sunlight exposure to ripen the fruit. Regular sea breezes ensure cool night temperatures during the growing period. All varieties sit on free draining soil. The 40 year old Grenache is grown in a red/brown loam containing ironstone to a depth of 400mm over limestone. The 25 year old Shiraz is grown in a sandy loam containing ironstone to a depth of 400mm over limestone & the 10 year old Mataro is grown in a sandy red/brown loam also with ironstone to a depth of 400mm over limestone. Ensuring fruit intensity is balanced by ripe skin tannins is a priority.