The trend of early harvest continues in 2008, and was the earliest on record. Spring was characterised by perfect weather at flowering, which ensured full, large bunches. As usual, rigorous shoot selection in early November kept crops low for maximum flavour intensity at harvest. Towards the end of the ripening season, what has been described as a "freak heat wave" lasting two weeks hit south-eastern Australia. In the state of South Australia, vintage is being described as either "before" or "after" the heat wave! We have found in recent years at Gembrook Hill that our naturally vigorous cool site, on deep red soils, along with vines that are dry-grown tends to (gratefully) insulate us from the increasingly warm weather. If anything, the pinot noir is favoured by the warmer weather while the chardonnay and sauvignon blanc still retain great natural acidity.
The vintage has resulted in fine, pretty wines with great poise and delicacy.