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The original Jamiesons Run was a remote outback sheep station owned by the Jamiesons Brothers in the mid 1800's. Our winery, based in the heart of the famous Coonawarra region was named Jamiesons Run as a tribute to our pioneering past.
Two men separated by time and distance laid the foundations for Jamiesons Run's creation - first was Alfred Deakin (Australia's second prime minister) with the assistance of Canadian irrigation experts William and George Chaffey (Chaffey brothers), second was John Riddoch.
John Riddoch, a Scottish émigré, established the Coonawarra Fruit Colony and planted the first vines in the Coonawarra area in 1890. The Undoolya Block vineyard contains hundred-year-old vines that date back from Riddoch's time, and is located close to where the Jamiesons Run winery is today.
Riddoch discovered the region's brick red coloured soil that was to become known as Terra Rossa - Australia's most famous wine-growing soil.
Jamiesons Run's connection with Coonawarra started in 1953 (as Mildara Wines) under the guidance of director Ron Haselgrove, who purchased what turned out to be some of the most sought after parcels of Terra Rossa soil in Coonawarra.
What is Terra Rossa?
Over 150 million years ago an ancient ocean covered modern day Coonawarra and sediment composed of the shells of crustaceans and shellfish became compressed into a hard limestone layer on the seabed. During the Ice Age the seas retreated and limestone ridges came to mark where the coast had been.
Over 60 km from the modern coast, the white limestone is concealed under the shallow, iron-rich topsoil that gives Terra Rossa its famous brick red colour.
Why is Terra Rossa perfect for growing great wine?
Although the Terra Rossa strip is only a few feet higher than neighbouring soils it has better drainage as a result. Vines dislike having 'wet feet' as this hampers their root development but wet soil also means cold soil and it is a vital part of the Coonawarra phenomenon that, despite its cooler climate, grapes here repeatedly reach optimum ripeness. It is the warmth of the Terra Rossa soils that allow this consistency. An ideal mineral profile and low nitrogen content are also vital for taming the natural vigour of vines and producing low yields of highly flavoured fruit.