South Australia straddles the centre of the Australian continent, and is the Australian wine industry’s ‘powerhouse’ State, producing most of Australia’s wine - from its cheapest to its most expensive - and boasting some of the oldest individual vines in the world. The old vines found in South Australia’s Barossa Valley and Adelaide Hills (through their isolation), survived the great phylloxera plagues that wiped out the vines of North America and Europe, and somewhat later, devastated Australia’s eastern vineyards. Quarantine restrictions were introduced, saving South Australia’s vines from phylloxera, and ensuring that the State retained its grape growing status.
Renowned for its diverse range of wine regions the South Australian wine industry has moved toward increasing ‘regional definition’ as a way of promoting its image and the quality to be had from its wines to a global audience.
With an abundance of top-notch producers exploiting the individual character of regions such as Coonawarra, the Clare Valley, Barossa Valley, McLaren Vale and the Adelaide Hills, it is clear that the approach to regional definition is the correct path for the industry to pursue in achieving its goal; hopefully the hard work and endeavours of the talented winemakers listed below will pay-off and their wines receive the recognition that they deserve.