Plantagenet’s total 126 hectares of vineyard have been carved out of the region’s distinctive Marri soils named after the massive native Marri, or Red Gum trees that grow here. The soils are gravelly loams with good drainage over a base of clay, sand or the ironstone rock, ensuring that the vines are not over-watered or over-fertilised, thus allowing for optimal fruit concentration.
The climate is cool-temperate and strongly influenced by the proximity of the Southern Ocean. Rainfall is plentiful and even during the hottest Australian summer, daytime temperatures are moderated by cooling evening sea breezes. The warm days and cool nights of the Great Southern allow maximum retention of the varietal flavours and aromas required for complex wines.
The combination of these ancient soils and cool maritime climate offers an environment perfect for growing premium wine grapes and making wines that are expressive of the place from which they come.
Named after Helen Pleydell –Bouverie, the mother of Plantagenet Wines’ founder Tony Smith, Bouverie was the first vineyard to be planted. Established in 1968 these old vines now produce the exceptional fruit required for our signature Plantagenet Range of Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, Pinot and Chardonnay.
This was the second vineyard to be planted in 1971 by Plantagenet Wines’ founder Tony Smith. Wyjup is the aboriginal name for the area which is some 40 km south west of Mount Barker. Originally one of 42 War Service Land Settlement Farms it had been used solely for sheep and cattle grazing until purchased by Tony in 1970. The vineyard is still the backbone of the Plantagenet Range with consistently exceptional fruit being produced each vintage.
Located 15 km south of Mount Barker, Rocky Horror vineyard was planted in 1988. It first took two years to clear the intended vineyard of the massive subsurface boulders, some of which were the size of small cars! Once removed, many of the boulders were transported to nearby port town of Albany and used for the construction of a breakwater in King George Sound.
Crystal Brook is located 4 km from Rocky Horror 1 and was planted in 1997. Like Rocky Horror 1, the site was also dotted with massive subsurface boulders. This time the rocks were crushed, mixed with organic matter and fertiliser and added back to the soil. The vines thrived in this fertile environment, and within five years the fruit was already full of flavour.
Rosetta, originally a farming property, was purchased and planted by Plantagenet Wines in 1999. Being 15 km west of Mount Barker the site offers a slightly warmer and drier site than our other vineyards and was chosen for the different growing conditions it offered.