Ancient Soils

Heathcote’s Cambrian soils formed over 500 million-years are ideal for viticulture. Deep, rich, decomposed greenstone rock with soil depths up to 2m allow vine roots to reach deep into the sub soil where moisture is more consistent, protecting the plants against extremes of drought and temperature. Our move to organic farming (certified since 2018) allows our wines to naturally reflect the influence of these incredible soils in every wine we make.

Organically Certified

The inspiration for the move to organics was sparked by a trip to northern Rhone in 2014, when Ian and viticulturist Tim Brown toured the region to research close planting and saw that a few of the best high-density growers in St Joseph and Hermitage were also applying organic principals. This confirmed the notion that high density planting combined with organic farming had the potential to create a very special expression of the Heathcote terroir. Within a year the application for organic certification was also submitted and the transition to organics commenced.

In addition to cutting out all use of all synthetic fungicides and herbicides, one of the key changes in viticulture was the use of an under vine cultivator for weed management. Cutting through the roots of weeds with minimal disturbance of organic matter allowed weeds to decompose into the soil enriching microbiome activity and promoting healthier soils. It also allows better moisture penetration into the subsoil. The first vintage to be labelled with organic certification was the wines made in the 2019 vintage.

On the Vine

We have 32 ha of vines on our 80 ha property; primarily shiraz (21 ha) with the remainder planted with a colourful array of vines including grenache, mourvèdre, carignan, nero d’avola, marsanne, roussanne, viognier, grenache gris, riesling and fiano. Blocks are named for the year of planting from 02, 03, 06 and 11.

Continental Climate

Our climate is beautifully consistent, warm, sunny and dry throughout the growing season. Summer is generally warm and sunshine-filled with little or low cloud cover; perfect for developing intensity of character and flavour. Cool nights allow grapes to recover through the first part of the day with temperatures not rising until afternoon, retaining elegance and freshness.

Heathcote Region

Tellurian’s winery and vineyards are in the centre of the Heathcote region. This is a long and diverse winegrowing area – 80kms from north to south. South is slightly cooler than north, with wines varying from fragrant, lifted, medium density to more brooding, darker fruit intensity in the north.

Close Planting

Our most recent vineyard was planted high on the ridge above the winery in a natural south-facing amphitheatre. It is high density shiraz - 8,888 vines/Ha inspired by the steep, close planted sites of Saint Joseph and Hermitage in Northern Rhone. The combination of soil, aspect and elevation with the planting density should induce outstanding shiraz.