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The rapidly emerging Hilltops region, encompassing the towns of Young, Harden and Boorowa approximately 150km west of Canberra is fast becoming known as one of the premium viticultural regions in Australia. High altitude plantings combining with the dry warm summers and long autumn days provide an excellent recipe for ideal ripening conditions, particularly for Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz. The rich red soils of these classic Cool Climate locales enables the production of wines with great intensity of flavour and finesse and enduring fruit quality. These wines will also age very gracefully whilst retaining true varietal characters.
Originally charted by European graziers during the 1830s this region remains famous for its merino sheep. In 1860 gold was discovered at the current site of the Lambing Flat Folk Museum in Young and within 12 months about 20,000 miners from across the globe descended. These days, Young is also renowned as the cherry capital of Australia thanks to its array of high quality stone fruit orchards.
Grape growing and winemaking are relatively new pursuits in comparison as modern commercial vine planting began back in the 1960s and 70s although original plantings were known as early as the 1860s. With over thirty vineyards now in the region up until recently much of the harvested fruit has been taken to other regions for processing just as we at Hungerford Hill do each year.
Most vineyards have been planted hugging the hillsides to try and avoid frost plus also maximise sun exposure thus entrenching the reputation that this region already has and will continue to grow. We are very pleased to be able to work with growers in this region and continue to create wines that show regional and varietal purity. Our aim is to continue this philosophy and expand on it with a lovely 2015 Hilltops Shiraz to be released once it has completed its barrel maturation.