The Barossa Rise Estate vineyard, owned 50% by NVFAL, is one of the Icon vineyards within the group and produces Icon and A grade fruit for its purchasers. The grapes are destined for the Penfolds range of wines from RWT to Bin 389.
It is located in the central region of Krondorf in the famous Barossa Valley region approximately 65km northeast of Adelaide in South Australia. Barossa Rise Estate is located approximately 4 km south of Tanunda in the heart of the region.
The 16.5ha property is located on the southern side of Krondorf Road, Krondorf and is approximately 150m above sea level.
The original vineyard was planted from the 1960’s to 1970’s a mixture of Grenache, Shiraz and white varieties. The property was owned by the Kliche family and was fully planted at this time.
The land is undulating and is serviced by a small stream that runs through the property. However, the water flow is low in most years. There is native vegetation and other grassed land within the site but no further area for planting.
The soils are rich loams and provide ideal growing conditions for ultra-premium wine grapes.
The land is able to use bore water drawn from fully automated pumps on the property. Irrigation is discussed in the Water section below.
Today, Barossa Rise Estate is planted to 13.8 ha, exclusively red varieties of Grenache and Shiraz. The key variety of Shiraz is the most desired variety for the region.
The varieties planted on Barossa Rise Estate were chosen by FABAL Operations in conjunction with the major purchaser of grapes from the property, Treasury Wine Estates, the owner of the famous Penfolds and Wolf Blass brands.
Shiraz dominates the planting on the Estate because of its notable reputation on the floor of the Barossa Valley region. It is also projected that demand will continue in the long term.
CLIMATE AND SOIL
The average rainfall of the central region of the Barossa Valley is approximately 510mm per annum. More importantly, the majority falls in the winter and spring (May to October) periods with lower likelihood of summer rain during the growing season. This results in reduced disease pressure from post rain events. There is low likelihood of hail but frost may affect some part of the site in some years. There is approximately 1,800 hours of sunshine from October to April of each (the heat degree index).
The site is open and has a slightly undulating terrain down to the stream running through the property. The soil on the property varies from red sandy clay loam to traditional Barossa red brown earths.
Soil nutrition is an important factor that can affect growth and NVFAL expends considerable resources to ensure that nutrient levels are monitored regularly.
WATER AND IRRIGATION
Grapevines require regular watering to supplement the natural annual rainfall. To produce the quality of wine grapes expected for this business, the Barossa Rise Estate vineyard requires approximately 0.5ML of water per hectare of supplementary irrigation give the regions annual rainfall.
The floor region of the Barossa Valley has good ground water for use in irrigation. Accordingly, Barossa Rise Estate has relied on this source for its supplementary irrigation over the past 50 years. NVFAL considers irrigation and its management to be the most important aspect of its operations. Considerable time was spent on the redesign of the irrigation system for the Barossa Rise Estate vineyard after it was acquired in 1999.
Irrigation System: The water is delivered to the grapevines through a series of pumps and mainlines according to the irrigation designed for the vineyard. The sophisticated ‘in-line’ drip irrigation system, supplied by Netafim Australia, was upgraded in 2009 and is considered the most effective supply of irrigation. The irrigation system is controlled by a computer network which enables the efficient application of the water through centralised control.
South Australian Water Entitlements: NVFAL has secured rights to 18.5ML of Barossa Valley Prescribed Water Resources Area licence via the ownership of Bore Water Licence No. 3659. Whilst NVFAL is satisfied that it has secured more than sufficient water to provide water for the vines in most years, it is a reality that supply can be restricted due to extremely dry conditions or other unforeseen events within the regional acquifer.