Valley vintage under way

Clare Valley’s 2018 grape vintage has kicked off with early varieties starting to fill bins, and while yields are expected to be down on last year’s bumper harvest, the quality of fruit is looking good.

Clare Regional Grapegrowers Association chair, Troy van Dulken, said with picking of “Riesling on track for late February and the reds in early March”, vintage was well on track.

“It’s all just starting to tick along now, the earlier varieties like Pinot Gris, Riesling and Chardonnay are starting to come in and we’d be looking at starting Shiraz at the end of the week,” he said.

“Things are looking pretty good considering the heat we’ve had over the last few weeks.

“We’re looking at slightly less quantity than last year with reds down 15-20 per cent and whites about 10 per cent down on last year.

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