It wasn’t so long ago that the Adelaide Hills was almost untested for grape growing. However, the region’s similarities in climate to that of Champagne have proven it to be the ideal place to create an Australian sparkling wine to rival the world’s best.
Piccadilly is a remarkable valley to the east of Mount Lofty, the highest point of the Adelaide Hills. What attracted Croser to Piccadilly – the coolest and wettest in a series of valleys radiating away from Mount Lofty – was its suitability for growing elegant Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.
A combination of adequate rainfall, a cool ripening season, diverse aspects and quite varied soil types – over some of the oldest rock formations on the earth’s surface – promised to deliver a subtle diversity of flavours from within the one valley.
Encouraged by this, Brian Croser established Chardonnay for Petaluma table wine on the warmer north and east facing slopes – and Chardonnay and Pinot Noir for Croser sparkling wine on the cooler south facing slopes. Nine years after those initial plantings, Petaluma made the first Croser sparkling, an elegant wine expressing the Piccadilly Valley’s delicate fruit flavours.
The vines have since matured, adding subtle flavour depth to the wines, but the style of Croser sparkling remains unchanged. It will always be an elegant wine driven by Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes grown in the Piccadilly Valley.