vineyard management

Italian, Romeo Bragato, who convinced the industry to graft European vines onto American root stock in order to alleviate the devastating effects of Phylloxera, believed that “good wines are grown in the vineyard”, a philosophy subscribed to by Nick Nobilo. The birth of each new vintage begins, not with the harvest of the grapes, rather it is a continuous, cyclical process that reflects the growing conditions of the vines over a long period of time.

 

With the focus on sustainable vineyard management, we work as much as possible in synergy with nature to achieve the best fruit quality for each vintage. Chicory and fescue are grown between the rows as a natural method of reducing vigour in the vines through moisture competition. At the same time this encourages the vines to push their roots deeper in the alluvial soils.

 

The structure of the vines is carefully maintained during the growing season and the leaf to crop ratio kept in balance through a careful pruning regime. As a part of the vineyard strategy to deliver a low yield of high quality grapes, the vines are pruned back to just two canes instead of the traditional four.

 

During the growing season regular leaf analysis is carried out to ensure the correct balance of trace elements is always present in the vines.

 

After flowering the leaves are hand-plucked from around the bunches to maximise exposure to sunlight. In seasons where fruit set exceeds the desired level, ‘green harvesting’ of the immature bunches is carried out to reduce crop yield. When the bunches reach optimum ripeness they are carefully handpicked to avoid damage to the fruit and taken directly to the winery for processing.

 

Nick's philosophy of having empathy with the vines and working in harmony with nature is instilled in all who work on the Estate.