As one of Australia’s youngest wine regions, gazetted in 2006, the small Pemberton Wine Region has already established a reputation for being one the most exciting emerging wine regions. John Gladstones first recommended Pemberton as a potential wine grape area in 1977.
The first commercial vineyard was established in Pemberton in 1982 by Pat and Barbara Holt. Doctor Geoff Riley, who planted a varietal trial plot on his property in Conte Rd, encouraged the forming of The Pemberton Vignerons Association. He has the honour of being the first life member of the regional association. Since then over 40 vineyards have been established in this unique environment.
Surrounding Pemberton and Northcliffe, the region is home to many picturesque vineyards that adjoin karri forests. Most of the vineyards of the Pemberton Wine Region lie between the Donnelly River and the Warren River that flows through the region's middle. The region is frequently referred to as "Karri Country" after the beautiful Karri forests. The soil supporting the region is karri loam a rich, red, fertile soil.
It combines southern latitude with high altitude 100 t0 200 metres above sea level and has a relatively cool climate, making it ideal for growing Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes and suited to the production of refined Bordeaux-style wines.
Other grape varieties grown in the Pemberton Wine Region are Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Semillon and Shiraz. It has also been noted that Pemberton is one of the few regions within Australia that offers fantastic potential for Merlot and that the region will become an increasingly valuable resource for this grape variety.
Many wineries are small family businesses where you have the opportunity to chat to the” hands on” proprietor.