Coonawarra is Australia's top red wine area specialising in Cabernet Sauvignon of great complexity and elegance.
The area is centered around a strip of 'Terra Rossa' soil over a shallow limestone 'ridge' in the southern part of South Australia's Limestone Coast wine zone.
The climate is cool with a heat summation of 1300-1500 degree days depending on the season. In the best years, Cabernet and Merlot produce powerful, well structured wines with complex flavours of berries, chocolate, cassis and tobacco. The grape flavours integrate well with new oak to produce long lived wines which consistently receive merit at National Wine Shows.
Pepper Tree's Coonawarra vineyard comprises 8 ha of Cabernet and 4 ha of Merlot and is located midway between the town of Penola & Coonawarra. Soils consist of thin dark brown to dark grey clays interspersed with broken limestone fragments. The shallow soil overlies soft crumbly limestone at depths of as little as 10cm so that the vines effectively grow in limestone rock. The shallow soils restrict vigour and this, coupled with rigorous canopy management, allows us to control berry size and bunch numbers and thus eventual crop load. This control of crop level and berry size gives our winemakers the best possible starting material with which to create premium red wines.
The characters we seek in our Coonawarra reds are elegance and complexity on the palate, fine tannin structures and intensely perfumed bouquets. Much of this is achieved by the effort we put in to our vineyard.
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