Limestone Coast Wine Region
The Limestone Coast Wine Region in south-eastern South Australia is a zone and it contains six formal wine regions, Coonawarra, Mount Benson, Mount Gambier, Padthaway, Robe and Wrattonbully.
A Note on Zones and Regions
Australian wine growing regions are divided into a hierarchy of Zones, Regions and Subregions. The regions do not cover all of the land within a zone and thus there are some vineyards which fall outside the formal boundaries of the regions but can still take the name of the zone. Wines made from grapes sourced from several regions within a zone can also be labeled with the zone name.
The environment in this zone is dominated by the sea. The landscape is consists of a series of limestone ridges running from the north-west to the south-east. These ridges are more or less parallel to the existing coastline and each represents a prior coastline. The soils produced by these ridges are deep and have excellent water holding capacity. Thus the regions is eminently suited to viticulture.
As well as its role of shaping the landscape in the past the sea currently plays an important role in today's climate in the Limestone Coast. The region receives an abundance of winter rainfall which is stored in the absorbant soils for summer. And the cooling influence of the sea is felt during the growing season, again ideal conditions for producing premium wines.
Wineries and Grape Varieties in the Limestone Coast Region
The major varieties in the region are the classics of Australian viticulture - Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, Merlot and Chardonnay. Pinot Noir and Sauvignon blanc are also used in the cooler areas. Traditional varieties do so well that there is little incentive to innovate with unusual varieties, even though there are plenty that would do well here.
Cape Banks Pinot gris |
Heartland Wines Dolcetto, Lagrein, Pinot gris, Sangiovese, Verdelho, Viognier |
Karatta Wine Malbec |
Port Robe Cygne blanc |
St Mary's Petit verdot
The great bulk of wine produced in the Zone is vinified in one of the regions, or transported elsewhere.
See separate pages for Coonawarra, Mount Benson, Mount Gambier, Padthaway, and Wrattonbully for
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