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Regional Overview

Vineyard in Western AustraliaRegional Overview

Visiting Australia? Discover our main wine states and regions

Australian wine regions

Australia is a large country - Margaret River is further from the Hunter Valley than Jerez in Spain is from Tokaji in Hungary - so, despite the distinctive national approach to wine, Australian wines are not all the same. The wines of Margaret River and of the Hunter Valley differ as much as sherry and tokay do. The three most important wine-producing states are South Australia, Victoria and New South Wales. As well as bulk production, they each have specific premium wine regions.

Read more about the wine regions of Australia here.


Home : Regions : Australia : Victoria : Heathcote

All articles on the Winepros Archive website are pre 2006 and are historical information only.


Region Summary

Location and Elevation
Central Victoria Zone
36° 45S, 144° 44'E
160-300 m


Both the climate and soils of the region are strongly influenced by the Mt Camel Range which runs the length of the region from Corop in the north to Tooborac in the south. This range tunnels the prevailing cool south to south-east winds which blow throughout the growing period from October to March. The result is summer temperatures which are two to three degrees lower than the peaks for Bendigo, and a cooler mean January temperature. Rainfall is surprisingly evenly spread throughout the year, and thanks to the hillside location of most of the vineyards, spring frost is seldom a problem.

Heat Degree Days: 1505
Sunshine hours per day: 8.5
Annual rainfall: 578 mm
Growing season rainfall: 279 mm
Mean Jan temperature: 21°C
Harvest: Mid Mar-late May

While there is, as usual, significant soil variation in the region, that of the slopes of the Mt Camel Range is a superb red soil with fine structure overlying uniformly textured red calcareous sodic clay soils. Confusingly for laymen, these soils are known as Cambrian Greenstones, their local manifestation as the Heathcote Greenstone Belt.

Principal Grape Varieties
Chardonnay: 17 ha
Other: 9 ha
Total white 26 ha

Shiraz: 340 ha
Cabernet sauvignon: 100 ha
Merlot: 35 ha
Other: 9 ha
Total red 484 ha

by James Halliday


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All articles on the Winepros Archive website are for historical information only. Mr James Halliday is no longer associated with Winepros.