The joy of ter­roir

High Sands in McLaren Vale

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High Sands vine­yard cov­ers 1.7ha in South Aus­tralia’s McLaren Vale and was es­tab­lished by Yan­garra Es­tate, part of the Jack­son Fam­ily Wines com­pany since 2001. These are old Gre­nache bush vines, planted in 1946, and their yel­low fo­liage marks the end of the grow­ing sea­son. McLaren Vale has a Mediter­ranean cli­mate and High Sands’ Gre­nache wines are typ­i­cally fruit-for­ward with soft tan­nins and strong acid­ity. Sit­u­ated at the top of an an­cient dune, High Sands is named for its deep sandy soils that pro­vide good drainage. Un­usu­ally, the sand here is al­most 100% sil­ica, mean­ing that it was formed in­land rather than by oceanic in­flu­ences. To­wards the hori­zon the Wil­lunga es­carp­ment stretches north to the Onka­paringa River Na­tional Park.

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