Original Post: 15 September 2013
It’s taken me some time to recover from my wonderful voyage to Chile, (which you may have read about in our Dec2012 newsletter), and its vineyards. Whilst I was in Chile, a wonderful couple, Alvaro and Marina, welcomed me into their world of organic wine production. Right from the start of my visit, I felt at home with their style of management and the care that they take with their environment.
It felt like home at Flyfaire straight away with the chooks, the llamas, the dogs and the working horse (ok, maybe no Llamas at Flyfaire), as well the most recent addition to their vineyard; the tractor, and finally their obvious close connection that they have with their vineyard.
We got right into talking about all the important stuff to do with wine including the water, the soil, cover crops, the vines, energy, labour, politics and life on the land. Our similarities were unanimously evident - even their river bed block.
Some differences to Flyfaire were evident, for example the soil Ph is below 5 at Flyfaire whereas Antiyal has a very basic soil alkalinity of around 8. However, with the additions of organic matter and biodynamic methods that are employed at Antiyal, they have easily overcome any impedance to vine growth and wine production.
Furthermore, the use of insect repellent to cover the crops under the vines plays a vital role in environmental sound pest management in the vineyard. All of Antiyal's strict biodynamic methods gives this vineyard very earthy feel and very sustainable!
I can only recommend that anyone visiting Chile must pay a visit to these beautiful, caring people who work hard to produce the very best wine that you can obtain. I hope that one day they will visit Australia and enjoy our vineyard and wine as much as I enjoyed theirs. Todo Bien!
Les (Winemaker, Flyfaire Wines & Chilean Wine Traveller)