Martin Smith has been supplying fruit to O’Leary Walker Wines since its inception in 2000. Thanks to Martin’s careful work in the vineyard and great work ethic the wines produced from his fruit maintain their outstanding quality year after year. Martin and his wife Joan purchased the Polish Hill River vineyard blocks in 1977, expanding on adjoining farmland that they already held. Martin’s family are long custodians of Polish Hill River land, having farmed in the area for generations, with links back to 1849.
The property has been practicing ‘organic’ viticulture since 2006 with National Association for Sustainable Agriculture, Australia (NASAA) approval for the entire farm expected in March, 2012. In order to be classified as ‘organic’ by NASAA, requires adherence to stringent regulations including using your own compost, ensuring that there is native vegetation on the property and showing that the property is long-term sustainable. NASAA need to be regularly provided with soil samples, fruit samples and petiole samples which are then tested for pesticides and residuals. The surrounding properties in the Polish Hill River region are predominately organic which helps to avoid drift spray.
The Riesling vines east of the homestead were planted in 1980. In addition to Riesling, O’Leary Walker also source fruit used in the “Claire” Reserve Shiraz from 117 year old vines on the farm. All vineyards are hand pruned, and although yields are lower, both Martin and winemaker David O’Leary say the quality of the fruit has improved since organic practices have been implemented. Martin also tends to the ‘Drs’ Block’, situated across the road from his property and owned by two Adelaide based heart surgeons, with some of the fruit from this block going into the European style, ‘Drs’ Cut’ Riesling.
Wines produced from Martin Smith’s Fruit:
O’Leary Walker Shiraz ( The 70% Clare Valley fruit comes from the vineyards tended by Martin.) €17.95
Blue Cutting Road Cabernet Merlot €12.95
O’Leary Walker ‘Claire’ Shiraz €70.00
O’Leary Walker ‘Polish Hill River’ Riesling €17.95
O’Leary Walker ‘Drs’ Cut’ Riesling €32.95
Thanks to the Gang @ O’Leary Walker Wines for the above info.