Our vineyards are located on the slopes at the base of the Willunga Hill escarpment and are elevated above the rest of the McLaren Vale floor. We do most of the physical work ourselves, but enlist the support of local contractors for the bigger jobs like harvesting.
“The alluvial red clay soils at Willunga Creek vineyards pay tribute to the resultant character in the shiraz and cabernet sauvignon wines. Descriptors such as dark chocolate, earthy and in some years, black pepper and spicy flavours most commonly describe the aromas, followed by a long lasting and lingering palate that precisely echoes what the aroma spells. The concentration of the shiraz and cabernet sauvignon wines is extremely complex and best describes the intricate micro-climate of the vineyard.
Much limestone, Urrbrae clay and blue and grey Willunga slate is evident throughout the vineyards. Topsoil forms a thin patina over this base and much of it has been washed away over the centuries to leave hard rock with slow-releasing elements – just perfect for growing icon red varieties such as shiraz and cabernet sauvignon, as it turns out. We carefully hand-pick parcels of grapes at around 14.0° Baume, which deliver powerful concentrated wines. This is the wine-style objective we aspire to at Willunga Creek.
One of the last contributors to flavour development in grapes is the amount and quality of water applied to the vines during the growth cycle. At Willunga Creek, little or no irrigation is applied in the vineyards, with natural rainfall normally providing all our requirements. If supplementary watering is required, however, it is sourced from a spring-fed dam carved into the hill above the vines. This provides clean, fresh water of excellent quality with negligible salinity. This is yet another contributor to the consistently good fruit quality achieved.”