The most unique expression of Semillon

Put simply, the Hunter Valley is the birthplace of Australian wine. Returning from Europe with 20,000 vine cuttings in 1832 James Busby was vital in helping establish the Hunter Valley as a key wine region and in turn vital in establishing Australia as a grape growing country.

Famous Australian wine names like Audrey Wilkinson, Maurice O’Shea, Murray Tyrrell, and famous wine families like Drayton and Tulloch are all borne of the Hunter Valley and its winemaking traditions.

Fast forward to today this is an Australian wine region that is defined by its rich historical tapestry and complimented by a new generation of innovative young winemakers.

Read more about the Hunter Valley.

Hunter Valley
Hunter Valley
This map is not an accurate representation of the regional GI boundaries. Please click here to view an accurate map of the regional boundary.

Hunter Valley snapshot

The Hunter Valley is Australia’s oldest producing wine region with vineyards dating back to the 1860’s still in production, some of the oldest vine stock in the world. Iconic vineyards are dotted through the region, with names like Graveyard, Old Hill and Old Paddock, Braemore and Old Patch becoming legend amongst Australian wine lovers. The warm and humid climate of the region is unique in Australian wine, leading to unique wine styles like long lived Semillon and earthy Shiraz.

Today the Hunter Valley, one of Australia’s most visited wine region, is all about peeling back layers of discovery. Learning that Hunter Valley Semillon is a unique Australian white wine which keeps getting better with age. Understanding that the region’s warm and humid growing conditions combined with red clay loam soils produce some of Australia’s most famous Shiraz. Discovering that the region’s young winemakers are exploring innovative new varieties and styles such as Tempranillo, Barbera and Fiano.  

Read more about the Hunter Valley.

2,324ha
Total vineyard area
75m
Altitude
32° 54'S
Latitude
500mm
Growing season rainfall
22.3°c
Mean temperature (Jan)
2170
Heat degree days
White
53%
Red
47%
Type

Chardonnay

One of the first regions in Australia to grow Chardonnay, Hunter Valley Chardonnay helped to grow the variety into an Australian icon. Modern styles range from lean and mineral through to full flavoured, richer styles.

Semillon

A world benchmark wine, Hunter Valley Semillon is the stellar white variety in the region. Semillon is at its delicate best when picked early to make a wine of low alcohol and almost invariably has ripe flavours at low sugar concentrations. This is the style of wine that best responds to bottle age by developing lemon curd and toasty complexity, barely recognisable from its demure beginning.

Shiraz

Shiraz is undoubtedly the Hunter Valley’s outstanding red grape. The typical young Hunter Valley Shiraz is a medium bodied wine showing red and dark berries, spices and plenty of soft tannin. With bottle-age, it becomes much more complex, with earthy, leathery overtones and a beautiful perfume. It also acquires a silkiness and grace, becoming a smooth, wonderfully complex and richly flavoured wine.

Top varieties grown in Hunter Valley
Climate
  • The Hunter Valley has a warm and humid climate
  • There can be rain falls during harvest in some years
  • Rain, humidity, cloud cover and gentle sea breezes mitigate the warmth
Soil
  • Quite varied soils across the region
  • Shiraz does best on friable red duplex and loam soils
  • Semillon does best on the sandy alluvial flats