The altitude makes for vast fluctuation between day and night temperatures, resulting in a slow, even ripening and layered fruit. A strong wind batters the vines year-long, making it tough for the plant to grow. This is a positive struggle though, for it yields small, concentrated berries full of flavour and vitality. Grape varieties are chosen for their ability to naturally thrive in these conditions. Regarded individually none of these elements are exceptional, but when they combine in this special place – a magical character is pieced together.
The best vineyard soils are notable for having a fine balance between water draining and water retaining properties. Vineyards seem to not produce great wines when the soils are too wet. Soils rich in shale and schist ensure free draining of water and the presence of a clay layer helps to keep the soil moist enough to nurture the wines throughout the summer. Our vineyards grow within shale, schist and sandstone-based soils with an underlying clay layer. These are ancient soils and the different rock layers exist because of millions of years of metamorphoses and weathering of the clay, sand and rock particles. The fine balance and mineral-rich composition of our soils are reflected in the elegance and complexity of the fruit they deliver.
Our echalas vineyards are an important part of our story. These staked vines create a totally different micro-climate than our trellised vineyards. Lower temperatures within the micro-climate ensure better acidity and more aromatic grapes. Using groundbreaking precision pruning techniques, we are able to extend the lifespan of our vines while ensuring that they are commercially viable and capable of producing a consistent high-quality crop.
The vineyards are planted on a North Westerly aspect. This aspect ensures that the vineyards receive enough sun exposure to fully ripen its grapes. The altitudes of the vineyards range from 300 – 470 m above sea level. The higher altitudes ensure that vineyards endure slightly cooler growing conditions than vineyards located on lower lying areas.