The Grenache is sourced from five different vineyards, each vineyard contributing a different flavour profile, providing the wine team with unique blending elements to create a complex, layered Grenache. Two of the vineyards are located in Blewitt Springs, with high elevation and sandy, well drained soils. The vines range in age, with one dating back to the 1940’s. The coastal influence is felt, the constant breeze continually cooling, with the trained bush vines protecting the delicate buds and flowers while self regulating their crops; resulting in low yields, yet with ripe skin and tannin profile.
Each vineyard is handpicked in the cool of the morning and processed separately. The grapes are destemmed without being crushed, to allow for some whole berry fermentation, chilled slightly, allowing for subtle extraction of colour and flavour during a short period of cold maceration. Once ferment starts, pump overs twice daily until dry, and the tannins have developed to Justin’s liking. It is then pressed off in the basket press before being transferred into old (minimum 3 years) French oak barriques. The wine is then aged in this oak for approximately 12 months before bottling and blending.
The wine is full of concentrated aromatics, with notes of vibrant summer berries; strawberry, raspberry and red plums along with spice and dried orange. There is a savoury underlying earthy element to this wine that complements the fruit, driven by supple tannins.
Shiraz is deeply woven into the fabric of McLaren Vale, becoming an icon of the region. Sourced from five unique vineyards in The Vale; Seaview Ridge, Birdsey, Cross, Zuzulo and Ministry, each providing layers of nuance and flavour for the end wine.
With the range of different vineyards both machine and hand-pickers are used. Aboout 10% of the hand picked element is used for whole bunch fermentation. After ferment this is gently foot-trodden before being pressed. The remainder is fermented in two tonne fermenters after a short period of cold maceration. The ferments are pumped over once or twice a day until the ferment is complete. A period of time on skins post ferment helps to extract true savoury tannins, then the wine is pressed off in a basket press. The wine then spends between 18-20 months in French oak barriques, three years and older. Also used are three larger foudres to age a portion of the shiraz. After this period the final wine is crafted from a blend of the five vineyards.
The resulting Shiraz is complex and savoury, briming with notes of vibrant red and black fruits, dusty cocoa, black olive and cumin. Powerful but elegant with restrained tannin profile a solid core of acidity.
Sourced from three vineyards, they vary in age but all are east facing towards the ocean providing a sea breeze flowing through them, keeping bunches dry and disease pressure low. The main vineyard right next to the winery and cellar door Samuels Gorge, was planted in 1997. This is blended with number of smaller parcels from the Sellicks Foothills on the southern border of the region, the opposite end of the region to the home vineyard at Samuel’s Gorge.
One of these new sites they work with is planted with the new Tempranillo clones that were brought in by Yalumba a few years back, seemingly referred to as the Spanish clones. Riley and Justin have loved the acidity balance and aromatics these parcels now add to the wine.
The grapes are machine harvested in the cool of the night. On arrival to the winery they are destemmed and transferred to two tonne vessels for fermenting. Cooling plates are inserted to ensure temperature is controlled and a short period of cold maceration. Ferments are wild and after starting pump overs occur twice daily. Some time on skins post ferment allows for the extraction of savoury tannins. It is then basket pressed into old, minimum 3 years, French oak barriques for 9 months before blending and bottling.
Blackcurrant, boysenberry, black cherry with hints of black tea, cola and tobacco. There ripe berry characters match with the more savoury liquorice and spice aromatics. The wine is medium bodied and much lighter and fresher than its more traditional Spanish counterparts, resulting in a wine that is more fruit driven and drinks beautifully in its youth though will age for up to seven years.
This low yielding, perfumed varietal is native to Spain, but thrives in the Vale, producing vibrant, and sassy wines with intense aromatics. Justin passionately believes this variety is perfect for the conditions as it retains acid like no other red variety he makes.
Traditionally, it is blended with Tempranillo, adding aromatics and structure. As a standalone variety it is a beautifully balanced and perfumed wine with fresh acidity.
Grown on the grey sands of East Willunga, harvest is done in two picks. 25% undergoes carbonic maceration, while the remainder is destemmed but not crushed. A wild yeast ferment is long and slow, before pressing to tank and 9 months elevage in old oak.