The Hillside vineyard was initially planted in 1892. In 1992 a systematic replanting of the eastern hillside commenced, using cuttings taken from the 100- year-old Block 6 Shiraz and suitably named New Block 6. Unlike Block 6, the Hillside Shiraz allows Kay Brothers to pick various parcels of fruit so as to assemble the best blend possible.
Block 11, located at the top of the hill, has shallow sandy loam soil over limestone and sandstone. These vines are very exposed to the wind and sun. As a consequence, the vines mature earlier in most years and tend to be low yielding, with intense fruit concentration and powerful tannins. The rest of the Hillside Shiraz is located farther down the hill, in New Block 6, where dark chocolate loam and clay soil dispersed with quartz and ironstone over silty limestone. The New Block 6 component provides the finesse and elegance to the overall blend with savoury flavours and tight structure. The blend of these two vineyards balances each other extremely well.
The 2015 vintage growing season began with an extremely dry and warm spring. Flowering conditions were excellent therefore optimising fruit set. Mild but dry conditions continued in early summer until mid-January, when we received 33 mm of much welcome rain. The rain freshened canopies and kick started veraison. The final ripening period was warm but with cool nights and no extended heat waves, full flavour ripeness and nice natural acidity levels were preserved.