Viticulture was pioneered in Henty in 1964 by Karl Seppelt, who accurately conceived it as an ideal cool region for the production of sparkling and delicate, aromatic wines. This is undulating terrain and prime grazing country, long famous – like much of western Victoria – for the quality of its wool. 

A gentle autumn ripening period with low but high-quality yields produces elegant crafted wine.  The region is situated to the east of South Australia's Coonawarra.  Riesling is the stand-out variety, with each of the wineries producing its own unique style.

In this far south-west corner of Victoria, local produce – lamb, beef, seafood, cheese and more – marries magically with wines from this region, which was named after the first family to settle in Victoria in the early 1800s.  The Henty wine region covers a large area of Victoria and extends from the Hopkins River across to the South Australian border. Wine production is concentrated in two parts of the region, Hamilton and Tarrington in the north east and Heywood, Condah and Drumborg in the south west.

Total Vineyard Area
38° 83'S
Growing season rainfall

Cabernet Sauvignon

The vintage conditions have to be favourable due to the cool climate, but when they are Cabernet is produced with striking similarities to the wines from the Haut Medoc in Bordeaux. The prominent characters of the wines are cassis, cedar and cigar box. 


Arguably the best suited grape for the making of table wine (although there has been a handful of extraordinary Gewürztraminers made by Seppelt), Riesling is made by many of the wineries in the region. Fine, intense and gently lime-accented wines gradually assume toastier characteristics as they develop in bottle over a decade or more, but they do not lose their hallmark elegance.

Top varieties grown in Henty
  • This is one of the coolest of the wine growing regions on the Australian mainland, producing quality wines from grapes grown in quite cold temperatures. 
  • The ample number of sunshine hours results in a growing regime not unlike that of the Canterbury Plains of the south island of New Zealand or European climates such as Burgundy. In common with those areas, Henty is beginning to make a distinct impression with varieties such as Riesling, Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Shiraz.
  • The vineyards are most widely planted on older Basalt soils: weathered basalt with gravelly loam topsoil overlying red clay.  
  • More recent plantings have variously utilised rich black volcanic clays, maritime sandy loam over limestone, and patches of terra rossa over limestone.

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This content is restricted to wine exporters and levy-payers. Some reports are available for purchase to non-levy payers/exporters.