Vineyards in our Past
Montgomery Vineyard - Cowaramup, Margaret River Wine Region
Max and Rita Montgomery’s Montgomery Vineyard is one kilometre north of Ellensbrook Road, about 10 km due south of Moss Wood. It is planted on north facing, gravelly loam slopes. Moss Wood use to consult for the Montgomery’s. When Hay Shed Hill were unable to buy the first crop in 2002, Keith offered to make the wine - and pay for it if he could find a buyer or give the Montgomery’s the wine if that were not possible. The Sydney super chef, Tetsuya Wakuda, long an admirer of Moss Wood, had been looking to source a Cabernet to sell under his own label. He jumped at an opportunity to buy a batch of the Montgomery Brothers Cabernet to sell at his restaurant under his label, "Cabernet Sauvignon - made for Tetsuya’s by Moss Wood".
Cabernet grapes from the Montgomery Vineyard were, in the past, used alongside Glenmore Vineyard fruit to produce the Moss Wood Amy's.
Lefroy Brook Vineyard - Pemberton
This attractive vineyard which is set in an amphitheatre of karri trees along the Pemberton to Northcliffe train line, south-east of Pemberton near the Cascades - a tourist landmark and a place of remarkable beauty. The vineyard is surrounded by National Park so the entire vineyard is permanently netted. It has been established by two very serious wine lovers, Pat and Barbara Holt, driven by a collective passion for Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The vineyard was planted by the Holts in 1982 and 1983 with their first wine being made from the 1986 vintage.
Apart from its scenic location, the vineyard is unique for another reason. It is planted on the traditional French vine spacing of one metre by one metre and trained in to the single guyot head shape. The system delivers maximum quality yet there are very few hectares of vineyard trained in this way in Australia. The vineyard is unirrigated (like Moss Wood itself), something which the mainstream Australian wine industry finds difficult to accept. For these reasons, Keith is delighted to source grapes from Lefroy Brook.
The first commercial vintage of chardonnay from Lefroy Brook took place in 1989, was made by Peter Fimmel and marketed under the Lefroy Brook label. The vineyard is now reaching maturity and so it is possible to forecast the wine's cellaring potential with some confidence.
Green Valley Vineyard - Forest Grove, Margaret River Wine Region
Green Valley Vineyard is a small, six hectare property which was established in 1980 by Ed and Elenore Green.
It is located on Sebbes Road, 16 km to the south of the township of Margaret River close to Devil's Lair. It has an attractive, cool, north-facing location, shelter from prevailing winds, is frost free and has good soil.
Mornington Peninsula Vineyard
We had been consistently impressed with the wines from the Mornington Peninsula and it was from there we chose to source grapes. Of course, it is not possible to give a brief summary of the benefits the region offers but there were some important reasons behind our choice. Curiously the area has much in common with Margaret River and perhaps this shows some inherent bias in our choice. Both regions share a maritime climate but instead of being surrounded on three sides by the Indian Ocean, Mornington is moderated by Port Phillip and Westernport Bays and Bass Straight. Similarly, both regions have rolling hills and therefore a topography that produces subtle but significant changes in aspect and soil type. These result in interesting variations in wine style. There is, however, a key difference - the temperature. Moss Wood at around 34 degrees south latitude is warm enough to ripen Cabernet Sauvignon, whereas Dromana, at around 38 degrees is only warm enough to ripen Pinot Noir. Within the region, there is quite broad a range of wine styles depending on where the vineyards are situated but importantly, all the Mornington Peninsula wines display fruit aromas that can be described as classical Pinot Noir, with perhaps a leaning to its finer, spicier spectrum.
Our grapes were sourced from a location near the town of Dromana on the lower slopes below Red Hill. The vineyard was managed according to our Moss Wood specifications, although some of the techniques were modified to meet the requirements of the different region. Winemaking was also carried out in Mornington, so the wine was grown, vintage and bottled in the region. Production was carefully specified and was virtually identical to the technique we use for Moss Wood Margaret River Pinot Noir. Clare and Keith visites the region on a regular basis to review progress and were always on hand to oversee the key stages.