Old Ben Vineyards, Crane's Range, Eden Valley

This vineyard is one of the oldest in the Eden Valley. It was first planted in the mid 19th century by the Hartwig family, and subsequently by the Bartsch family - another true viticultural and historical icon from the Eden Valley. It is a magnificent and breath-taking amphitheatre of vines (55 acres of the classic Eden Valley varietals, many of them over 50 years of age), situated on the south-facing slopes of the Crane's Range near the Eden Valley township and so sheltered from the strongest summer sunshine - truly a vineyard with cool climate characteristics. It composes 125 acres and is truly its own unique viticultural ecosystem, set entirely on its own in the heart of the Eden Valley and perfectly suited for Biodynamic viticulture (currently in conversion).

The soils are grey-brown loamy sand over mottled yellow-brown clay with quartz gravel and rock fragments. The quartz and rock fragments are a result of decomposing schist. These soils are typical Eden Valley and regularly become saturated in winter leading to water run off into the numerous winter creeks. They also store water for the vines use during the Spring and Summer months. In a normal year they become very dry by mid Summer which effectively leads to a degree of vine stress and subsequently low yields and berry size result. This is particularly useful for the development of small berried, high coloured and full flavoured Shiraz. The long ripening season and cooler nights relative to the Barossa Valley leads more lifted perfume aromas and tightly structured wines. One special feature of Eden Valley Vineyard is its old vine stocks of Shiraz planted in the early 20th century, the remnants of the Barossa’s forgotten fortified wine industry. These grandfathers produce low crops of small berried grapes capable of intense flavours.

We follow all our traditional biodynamic viticultural practices, including weed-eating sheep, cover crop, compost and application of our in-house 500 biodynamised cow manure. Our top blocks of Riesling, Cabernet, Shiraz and Chardonnay are all dry farmed, resulting in pure, intense fruit which will be perfect for Maverick wines.