Coonawarra, South Australia | Australian wine at it's best
Coonawarra Wine, Australia
Coonawarra has long been recognised as one of Australia's premium wine producing regions and takes its name from the Aboriginal word 'honeysuckle'.
  • Wine grapes were first planted in Coonawarra in 1890 with the first vintage being 1895
  • John Riddoch was the founder of the 'Coonawarra Fruit Colony', which later became known as the Coonawarra wine region
  • Construction of the first winery in Coonawarra was commenced in 1896 and completed in 1897 and is known today as Wynns Coonawarra Estate
Cellar Door Sales
  • There are a total of 22 Cellar Door outlets in the Coonawarra wine region
  • Coonawarra currently has 17 working wineries in close proximity along the Riddoch Highway
  • Current plantings of 5603 hectares planted with vines in Coonawarra (SA Wine Grape Crush Survey, 2014)
  • Two distinctive periods of growth were one in the mid to late 70's and the other in the late 90's
  • Coonawarra now has about 7% of the South Australian wine industry vineyards
  • The following varieties of vines are planted across Coonawarra:
    • Cabernet Sauvignon 62%
    • Shiraz 20%
    • Merlot 7%
    • Chardonnay 5%
    • Sauvignon Blanc 2%
    • Riesling 1%
  • Other varieties include Cabernet Franc, Malbec, Petit Verdot, Pinot Noir, Semillon and Viogner
  • Most of the plantings have occurred pre 1999
Why is Coonawarra's 'terra rossa' unique?
  • It is derived from fresh water, lacustrine limestone
  • It contains a high, aeolian clay and nutrient content
  • It provides the best terroir for Cabernet Sauvignon in the world!
* The geological term 'terra rossa', which is of Italian origin, was first used by Zippe in 1853.
  • Coonawarra is a cool climate wine region, characterised by cold nights and a long extended ripening season
  • Average daily winter temperature is 9.8C
  • Average summer temperature is 18.8C
  • Average elevation is 55m above sea level
  • Coonawarra is a Phylloxera free wine region
  • The Coonawarra wine industry employs over 1600 people
For further facts and figures please visit the Wine Australia website and/or the Phylloxera and Grape Industry Board of South Australia.     
Animated Examples
To learn all about the winemaking process through a simple animation, please click here.
To view an animation on the structure of a vine, please click here.