Cool climate

Warm and Cool climate wine regions

There are warm climate and cool climate regions for growing wines with each producing its own style; fruit forward, juicy, more subtle, and elegant wines with a true sense of place. Within regions there are macro, meso and micro climates.

Macro climates are the largest of the three and can consist of one region like Margaret River whereas a meso climate fits into that. Think of Wilyabrup in Margaret River. Micro climate can be as small as just a few rows of vines and it can have a different climate from other areas of the region. Proximity to water, altitude, south facing slopes in the northern hemisphere, north facing slopes in the southern hemisphere, the type of soil (good drainage, heat retention), the different pockets of air; these all have an influence on the wines.


Warm climate

A warm climate will affect the taste of the grapes. With more direct sunlight and for longer hours each day, it means the fruit grows quicker and there is more sugar in the grape. The wine is then juicy, full bodied and fruit forward. There tends to be less acidity in these wines.

Cool climate

Compare a warmer climate wine style to a cooler climate where in some cases the grapes can struggle to ripen (think Champagne or northern Burgundy) and so there is less sugar, but more acidity. They are more subtle in flavour with a lower alcohol.

Just as a warmer region can have cool micro climates, a cooler region can have warmer pockets.

Great Southern wine region

It was based on the report written by Professor of Viticulture at the University of California, Harold Olmo focused on “A Survey of the Grape Industry of Western Australia,” that a site was chosen in Mount Barker to plant the first vines back in 1965. It was Professor Olmo who said that Mount Barker; “showed great promise to produce premium wines and likened the gravelly soil conditions  to Bordeaux, in France.” The west facing slope that was chosen was well drained gravel loam on undulating redgum soils.

In 1965, 5 acres of vines were planted at Forest Hill with the first vintage in 1972. Since then the company has won numerous awards for its wines; too many to mention here but click on their site for details.

Family owned they try and ensure each wine they produce has a sense of place and reflects its natural environment. All grapes are dry grown which means there is no irrigation. The winery has over 60 acres of vines from which they produce:

  • Riesling
  • Sauvignon Blanc
  • Sauvignon Blanc Semillon
  • Chardonnay
  • Cabernet Merlot
  • Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Malbec
  • Shiraz

With their Block series wines, the focus is small parcels and quality from the best old vine fruit including the original 1965 vines. Drop in and talk to us about the Forest Hill wines that we stock in the store!

Forrest Hill entrance

One thought on “Cool climate


    Comments are closed.