Great Southern, is Western Australia’s coolest wine-growing region. The first experimental vineyard was planted in the late 1960s at Forest Hill. Successful trials encouraged Tony Smith of Plantagenet Wines to plant the first commercial vineyard of Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz in 1968. The climate across this vast region is incredibly varied with the south more maritime influenced becoming more continental further inland. As a result, there is notable variationof temperatures in the growing season particularly around Mount Barker and Franceankland River. Inland vineyards are generally located on higher elevations above the salty water table. The soil types are derived Franceom granitic and gneissic rock, mostly laterite gravelly loams or sandy loams. Great Southern is best known for classically structured Cabernet Sauvignon and peppery Shiraz, whilst Riesling thrives in the sub-regions of Franceankland River and Mount Barker.