ASHTON HILLS ESTATE PINOT NOIR 2012
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Australia's wine industry is a thriving part of the country's economy, contributing significantly to employment, production, export, and tourism. In fact, the industry is the fourth-largest wine exporter in the world, shipping out 760 million liters of wine to countries including France, Italy, Spain, and the UK. One of the key factors contributing to Australia's success as a "New World" wine producer is the formal export and marketing of its wines through Wine Australia.
Australia's wine regions are scattered across the south and southeast, with almost every state boasting its own vineyards. Victoria, for example, is home to an impressive 21 wine regions. Some of the most famous wine regions in Australia include Margaret River, Barossa Valley, McLaren Vale, Eden Valley, Clare Valley, Hunter Valley, Yarra Valley, and local regions to New South Wales such as Cowra, Southern Highlands, and Mudgee.
Australian winemakers are known for producing a diverse range of grape varieties, with Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, and Pinot Noir being among the most popular. They tend to focus on producing wines that are ripe, fruit-forward, and easy to drink, using modern winemaking techniques and equipment such as stainless steel tanks and temperature-controlled fermentation.
With its bold, fruit-driven flavors and reputation for quality and diversity, Australian wine has become a popular choice for wine lovers around the world. And with such a broad range of wine regions and grape varieties, there's something for every palate to enjoy.
If you like Australian wine, then you probably like South Australia wine. The rich reds produced there put Australia on the wine-making map of the world. With over 40% of the country's vineyards, South Australia can rightfully call itself the wine state.
Wines are produced in several regions throughout the state, though many are naturally grouped together, like Barossa and Eden Valleys, only 15 minutes apart. They include such regions as Barossa Valley, Clare Valley, Eden Valley, Coonawarra, Adelaide Hills, Kangaroo Island, Langhorne Creek, The Limestone Coast, McLaren Vale and Wrattonbully to name but a few!
Barossa Valley boasts some of the oldest vines in Australia dating back to 1843 and produces some of the world's finest Shiraz, whilst the 'terra rossa' soils of Coonawarra is most suited to producing outstanding Cabernet Sauvignons. If you're a fan of Riesling, Clare Valley is a great place to explore and for a Maritime climate not dissimilar to parts of the Italian coastline, seek out the wines from McLaren Vale.
Famous for their Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Riesling and Pinot Noir, the viticulture of this region was re-established in 1979 but grapes were planted locally as early as 1839. During the last three decades, Adelaide Hills has emerged as one of Australia’s most exciting cool climate wine region, being known to produce elegant, distinct, sophisticated wines. Located in the Mount Lofty Ranges and only a 30 minute drive from Adelaide, this region is home not only to over 90 wine labels and 48 cellar doors, but also to multiple forests, beef and dairy farms, apple and pear orchards.
Known to be one of the largest geographical wine regions in Australia, the Adelaide Hills are made up of two registered sub regions: Lenswood and Piccadilly Valley. These narrow band of hills stretch across to be approximately 70 km long and 30 km wide and border Barossa and Eden Valleys to the North and McLaren Vale to the South.
The climate of this region is considerably cooler compared to other wine regions in the summer, due to the altitudes of the vineyards being 400-700 meters high. The cooler drier climate produces grapes with ideal fruit composition, creating the perfect balance of flavour and acidity.
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About the brand Ashton Hills
Ashton Hills is a three hectare, dry-grown vineyard that lies in the Piccadilly Valley sub region of the Adelaide Hills on a ridge just below the summit of Mount Lofty. The estate was founded by Stephen George in 1982 and since that time it has built a reputation as one of Australia’s finest proponents of Pinot Noir and cool climate whites.
The Ashton Hills Estate provides the fruit for the majority of Ashton Hills wines including single vineyard wines in the Reserve Pinot Noir, Estate Pinot Noir and Riesling. As custodian of the vineyard for over 30 years, Stephen has harnessed the three key climate variables (humidity, cold and rain) he believes are critical to the Ashton Hills site and developed a reputation for producing some of the finest wines from the Adelaide Hills.
Nestled in the Piccadilly Valley the vineyard is climatically different to the rest of the Hills, being significantly colder and wetter. At one of the highest altitudes in the Adelaide Hills the vines shudder through some of the coolest vintage conditions in the country, with rainfall a whopping 1200mm a year, well over double that of the Barossa Valley. So whether it’s the lifted perfumes and elegant structure of the Pinot Noir or the crisp purity of the Riesling, Piccadilly Valley’s bona-fide cool-climate imprint is a feature of the wines.
For over three decades Stephen experimented with up to 25 Pinot Noir clones, ultimately settling on five key clones that now make the acclaimed Reserve and Estate Pinot Noirs from Ashton Hills, plus a range of awarded sparkling wines. Eight carefully cultivated rows of Riesling also remain in the Ashton Hills vineyard, producing a highly exclusive and limited Riesling each year.