||In Coonawarra, the growing season was drier than usual, delivering only half the normal rainfall. Vintage 2016 commenced early, with a warmer October advancing the whole season, with flowering, veraison and harvest dates were all a couple of weeks early. However, despite the early season, the time taken for berry development and ripening was in line with normal, allowing adequate time for fruit to develop tannins and complexity. February and March temperatures were mild, and the cold nights and warm days delivered an extended ripening period and the longer hang time contributed to rich, medium bodied Cabernet Sauvignon with good varietal definition. In the Clare Valley, rainfall was below average for the season, but it was not the amount that had the biggest impact; it was the timing. Mother Nature saw fit to dole out just the right amount of water at just the right time for maximum positive impact on the vine? health and importantly, the quality of the fruit produced. In fact, this was just one of the factors at play when it comes to the vintage being lauded as one of the greats. Firstly, the vines were ?tress free?heading into the winter period, creating the potential for a superior crop. Secondly, conditions were ideal during flowering and then lastly, the threat of frost did not eventuate. All these conditions combined to create what called be described as ?he perfect storm?for an excellent vintage.