With its northerly latitude and close oceanic influences, the Hunter Valley is among Australia's hottest and wettest wine areas. Flanked by mountains to the west and north the Hunter Valley acts as a funnel, pulling cool ocean breezes into the location. This effect resembles the cooling that Napa Valley gets from San Pablo Bay in California.
However, with those cooling breezes also comes heavy rains and periodic cyclonic storms in the summertime and fall months. In the summer, the average day-to-day temperature routinely goes beyond 21.1 ° C (70.0 ° F) while during the winter the temperature level averages around 14 ° C (57.2 ° F). Through the growing year, January tends to be the warmest month while July is typically the coolest.
Throughout the growing season the Hunter Valley receives an average of 7.3-- 7.5 hours of sunlight a day, however with the cloud cover being available in off the ocean the sunshine is slightly diffuse which offers the vines some protection from heat stress. During the growing season the Lower Hunter will balance around 2070 degree days (Celsius) with the Upper Hunter having 2170 degree days putting it under the Winkler heat summation scale as an Area IV.
This leads to normally drier conditions in the winter season of July and August. In the summer, southeasterly winds bring weather condition fronts harbouring comprehensive amounts of moisture. In Between October and April more than 2 thirds of the area's annual rainfall will fall with January and February being the wettest months.
The rain, combined with the heat, motivates high relative humidity in the area and subsequent threat of mould. During the growing season months of October-- April, the 3pm average for relative humidity in the Lower Hunter is 49%, while it is 43% in the Upper Hunter. The Hunter Valley Wine Zone Australian Geographical Indicator was registered on 1 May 1996 and is around the whole Hunter River catchment.
The Hunter Wine Area Australian Geographical Sign was declared on 18 March 1997. It is not as large as the Hunter Valley zone, but includes the majority of the considerable vineyards. It does not extend east of the Pacific Highway. The Hunter area has 3 subregions. The 3 acknowledged subregions of the Hunter Wine Area are Broke Fordwich (signed up 2 September 1997), Pokolbin (signed up 29 July 2010) and Upper Hunter Valley (signed up 29 July 2010).
of vineyards50Varietals producedSemillon, Chardonnay, ShirazNo. of wineries16 Broke Fordwich surrounds the towns of Broke, Fordwich and Bulga. Some of the oldest vines in the Hunter Valley were planted in 1924 around the village of Fordwich. The Broke Fordwich subregion is between the Upper Hunter Valley to the northwest and the lower Hunter Valley (including Pokolbin) to the east.
It has lower rainfall and greater diurnal temperature level variation than Pokolbin. The Broke Fordwich location is located along the Hunter River tributary of the Wollombi Brook near the suburb of Pokolbin. The area was founded in 1830 by Major Thomas Mitchell who named the region after his fellow Napoleonic War seasoned Sir Charles Broke-Vere.
In September 1997, it was given official sub-region status of the Hunter Valley. For most of the Hunter Valley's history, Broke Fordwich was noted for the quality of its fruit. Max Lake, of Lake's Folly, noted in 1970 that "Much of the reputation of Pokolbin rests with fruit from Fordwich".
A number of the vineyards of the location lie on the undulating hills around the towns of Broke and Bulga leading up to the southwestern edge of the Brokenback variety. The big Yellow Rock escarpment that border Broke also has numerous vineyards and is the regions dominant geographical function. The location is among the hottest in the Lower Hunter with some continental influences due to extenuating foothills of the Brokenback range that particularly encircle the location and obstruct numerous of the breezes coming off the coast.
More than third-quarter of the vineyard land in the area is committed to Chardonnay, Semillon, Verdelho, Shiraz, Pinot noir and Red wine. Other varieties grown in the area include Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Chambourcin, Malbec, Traminer, Barbera, Trebbiano, Viognier, Sangiovese, Tempranillo and Dolcetto. The Pokolbin subregion, which surrounds Pokolbin supplies many of the grapes referred to as "Lower Hunter Valley".
The eastern limit is Black Creek east of that road, and the western boundary is the Pokolbin State Forest. The location consists of various wineries, ranging from large multi-national to little household run operations, which are a popular tourist destination. In addition to long-established names like Drayton, Lindeman's, Tulloch, Lake's Recklessness and Tyrrell, more recent plantings from the likes of Brokenwood Wines, Don Francois, Allandale, Petersons and Bimbadgen can be discovered.
Regardless of hot summertimes and freezing winters with regular frost providing a continuous challenge to vineyard supervisors and wine makers, the area is an effective wine growing area thanks to mountains that encircle three sides of the valley, the cloud cover, and afternoon easterly ocean breeze which, during summertime, aid to reduce the blazing sunshine and keep humidity moderated on the valley floor.
The red volcanic soil is discovered mainly on the southern ridges. However, it can be discovered in patches on the valley flooring. Over the years, the style of Hunter whites and reds has altered greatly, from robust, muscular reds exhibiting the popular Hunter Valley "sweaty saddle"  and extremely long-lived Semillon whites to reds showing more fruit, intricacy and delicacy and whites displaying fruit-driven characters.
The Upper Hunter Valley is the most northern and western subregion of the Hunter region, on greater slopes of the Hunter Valley. The Upper Hunter area was first planted in 1860 by a German inhabitant called Carl Brecht. From his vineyard planted at the junction of Wybong Creek and the Goulburn river, Brecht's red wines would win many gold medals at worldwide wine competitions in the 1870s.
It wasn't up until the 1960s when Penfolds purchased land near Brecht's old Wybong estate that substantial viticulture interest in the Upper Hunter reappeared. Through several years of experimentation, the viticulturalists at Penfolds were able to determine that the location was most suitable for gewurztraminer grape varieties. In contrast to the Lower Hunter, the Upper Hunter receives less general rain (620 mm (24 in) yearly to Lower Hunter's 720 mm (28 in)).
Being more inland, the Upper Hunter receives less maritime influence from the cooling ocean breeze and has a much hotter heat summation with 2170 degree days (Celsius) to the 2070 degree days generally seen by the Lower Hunter. Numerous small wineries run in the region. The Upper Hunter has experienced a decrease in vineyard area considering that the withdrawal of large wine manufacturers Rosemount and Arrowfield from buying big quantities of Upper Hunter grapes early in the 21st century.
Some, like Botrytis cinera (pictured), can be preferable and utilized to produce dessert red wines known as "stickies". Like many New World wine regions, there is little to no federal government restrictions on the kind of viticultural practices utilized in the Hunter Valley. Growers are free to plant whatever grape range they want, use any pruning or vine training system, and harvest as big or little of yields as they wish.check here for deals