Hungerford Hill's estate vineyard, adjacent to the winery and cellar door in Broke Road, Pokolbin, is named after a the Kirby family home. Vernay is a commune in France's Rhone Valley, the ancestral home of the Shiraz grape, so it's fitting that this is the name for our estate Shiraz.
The vineyard covers 5Ha, and the main variety is Shiraz (3Ha), planted in 2002. 2Ha of Cabernet Sauvignon was also planted in 2002, but the difficulties of ripening Cabernet in the Hunter meant a decision was made in 2013 to remove these vines and plant Vermentino, Gewurtztraminer and Chardonnay. We will (weather permitting) be picking our first fruit from these vines in 2016.
Our club members received the first "St Vernay Shiraz" in their packs in March 2015, and this wine is drinking beautifully, with light peppery fruit and great balance. Watch out for St Vernay Gewurtztraminer and Vermentino in 2016, and Chardonnay in a few more years!
The Australian wine industry owes a big debt of gratitude to the European settlers who introduced viticulture to our wide brown land. The diversity of our continent means Australian winemakers are spoilt for choice, with an enviable variety of climates, grape varieties and winemaking styles.