Tasmania is an island lying to the south of the Australian mainland at 42 degrees. Being an island, the Australian state experiences a maritime weather environment, and many of the vineyards have to put up wind blocks to shelter the vines. Although Tasmania’s wine output only accounts for 1% of national wine production, it more than makes up for it in quality, with the state’s wines accounting for around 10% of Australia’s premium wine segment.
The area primarily grows Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc, with some smaller plantings of Riesling, Pinot Gris and Cabernet Sauvignon. As global warming slowly roasts the planet, the prospect of increasing the production of red wine using Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Shiraz is being explored.
The lower slopes of Tasmania enjoy a rich soil profile and are a mix of ancient sandstone/mudstones and newer river sediments/igneous volcanic rocks. The combination of soil profile and cool climate results in Tasmania being a fantastic region for the production of sparkling wines. Frequently being compared to Champagne, it’s widely agreed that Tasmania’s sparkling wines go head to head with its French competitor. In fact, one producer has even made the tongue and cheek move of dubbing their wine Méthode Tasmanoise.