Gibbston Vineyard (Planted 2000)Valli’s estate vineyard in Gibbston is planted at 4050 vines/ha and cropped at only1kg/vine to ensure perfect ripeness. The first vineyard in the valley to be planted in the true north-to-south direction, it maximises the amount of sunlight hours the vines receive, contributing dramatically to the uniform ripening of fruit, a critical factor in Pinot Noir quality. The vineyard soils are mainly schist derived, windblown alluvial loess. The topsoil is between .5 and 1m deep over free draining gravels that allow the vine roots to easily access water and nutrients. Gibbston, one of the coolest sub regions of Otago, has one of the slowest ripening seasons. A key factor in quality Pinot Noir from such a cool area is long hang time, that is, the amount of time the grapes are on the vine; this allows them to develop elegance and complexity of flavour. Sometimes our Gibbston Vineyard is not picked until early May.
Bannockburn Vineyard (Planted 2000)The location of Valli’s Bannockburn Vineyard is only 20km from Gibbston in the Cromwell basin but the difference in climate is responsible for creating markedly different wines. The Bannockburn wines reflect this warmer area by displaying darker fruits, by being denser, more powerful and with longevity based more on their tannin structure, as opposed to Gibbston wines which are based more on their acidity. The soils are also windblown loess over gravelly schist but with sandier, deeper topsoil, which allows for free draining. Climate, rather than soil, attributes to the main difference in the wines.
Bendigo Vineyard (Planted 2006)
The Bendigo Pinot Noir is the newest addition to the Valli stable of Single Vineyard Pinot Noirs. A number of years ago, Grant was involved in the largest-ever plantings at Bendigo, across 5 different sites, and quickly identified "Chinaman's Terrace" as his favourite. The higher elevation of this site means slightly cooler temperatures, which is important in these warmer sub regions, and good airflow, helping to prevent rots and mold. When the opportunity to make wine from the Zebra Vineyard on Chinaman's Terrace presented itself, there was only one answer: YES.The wines from this very warm part of Otago have been described as "big friendly beasts". They are dark, rich, lush wines capturing the rock-reflected heat and ripeness of this special site.