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Katnook Estate


Coonawarra is one of the only regions in Australia that can genuinely claim the influence of ‘terroir”. The concept of terroir recognises that the unique combination of a region’s soil, microclimate and topography imparts intrinsic and distinct qualities to its wines, qualities that cannot be reproduced anywhere else.

Coonawarra is most famous for its red earth or Terra Rossa soil, a rare combination of a top layer of rich, friable red loam over deep stratum of limestones under which lies a water table. So it has excellent water holding capacity.

Like all terroir, it’s how this terra rossa interacts with the region’s maritime climate that makes the difference.  At just 60 metres above sea level, Coonawarra has a maritime climate with long but cool hours of sunshine during the ripening period and cold nights. Grapes thus develop intense flavours whilst retaining impressive acidity levels. Average daily winter temperature is 9.8C and average summer temperature is 18.8C

As we are located 80km from the Southern Ocean, we are privvy to a rare phenomena called The Bonney Upwelling. This dark blue water stream on the coast near Coonawarra comes up from Antarctica, resulting in cooler temperature. Long but cool hours of sunshine during ripening allows grapes to develop intense flavour while retaining good acid levels.

With its long, warm summers, cool autumns and cold winters, the climate of Coonawarra has been compared to that of Bordeaux.

Coonawarra/Bordeaux Climate Comparisons

Coonawarra Bordeaux

37o18’S, 140o50’E. ALT 59m.

44o50’N, 0o43’W. ALT 47m.

Average Number Rain Days: 68

Average Number Rain Days: 93

Average Rainfall: 257mm

Average Rainfall: 427mm

Growing Season: October - April

Growing Season: April - October

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