We are excited to announce our new releases for 2018, including the 2016 Block 6 Shiraz, 2017 Griffon's Key Grenache, 2016 Cuthbert Cabernet, and 2018 Grenache Rosé. Many of the Halliday high scoring wines have already sold out, so it is great to see their successors released and, as usual, there are some cracking wines to pour into your glasses!
Our Block 6 vineyard faces east and rows run north-south with significant undulation. Vines are cane pruned with the canes wrapped onto the top wire of the low lying trellis. The present 3.5 acres comprises loamy soils, heavy clay, and gravelly alluvial soils on the lower side. The underlying “South Maslin Sands” geology is also extremely complex.
The dry winter and spring of 2015 was followed by a similarly dry summer. When the rains did arrive at the end of January 2016, the moisture was quickly absorbed by the depleted soils and provided a welcome refresher to the vine canopy and also assisted in filling out the berries without impacting on flavour and concentration and complexity. The typical warm day and cool night conditions found in McLaren Vale then allowed these flavours to develop fully.
Block 6 was hand-picked on 7 March, producing a healthy, clean crop of 10.65 tonnes. The grapes were crushed, de-stemmed and plunged twice daily and spent 10 days on skins in our traditional open fermenters. Basket pressing followed and the wine matured for 23 months in 40% new French and American oak puncheons. Bottled in March 2018.
Colour: Deep ruby.
Nose: Intense aromas of violets, fennel,
sage, boysenberry, marzipan, cigar box and
a hint of cedar.
Palate: Layers of concentrated cherries and dark
chocolate. Followed by slowly building fine-grained
graphite-like tannins of immense length. Rich and
concentrated with power and finesse.
Vintage 2017 was set up by wonderful winter and spring rainfall, being the wettest season since 1992. This rain gave the soils and entire eco-system a much needed flush after the dry summers of 2015 and 2016. Bud-burst was late but flowering conditions were mild and fruit set was quite good. Because of the mild summer temperatures vine canopies thrived with little stress compared to most years. The final ripening period was warm with cold nights, very favourable conditions for flavour development, setting the scene for an outstanding high quality vintage.
The vineyard has a North-Eastern exposure. Soils are shallow red sandy loam over complex geology comprising quartz and ironstone gravels, weathered and calcareous sandstone, siltstone and limestone.
The best parcels of hand-picked Grenache were selected from the Amery vineyard. Fruit was open fermented and hand plunged for 10 days on skins, prior to traditional basket pressing in our 1928 press. The wine matured a further 10 months in aged French oak puncheons.
Colour: Bright crimson with a violet hue.
Nose: Alluring aromas of rose petal, dark cherries and
a hint of spice.
Palate: Rich and concentrated fruit flavours of
strawberry, raspberry and dark cherries. Nice supple
acidity and fine silky tannins combine to provide an
The 2016 vintage growing season began with an extremely dry winter and spring. Flowering conditions were quite good and not as windy as some years. Summer was initially warm and dry, keeping fruit and vine canopies disease free whilst restricting shoot growth.
Between the 29th of January and the 3rd of February, the drought broke and we received 44mm of much welcomed rain. The moisture depleted sub-soils soaked up the rain and canopies were freshened while also filling out berry sizes.
The final ripening period consisted of mild day time temperatures and cool nights, ideal for full flavour development.
The 2016 vintage Cuthbert Cabernet is the 7th release of this commemorative wine. 6.81 tonnes were hand harvested on the 21st of March 2016. The grapes were traditionally processed using open fermentation for 10 days on skins and then basket pressed in our 1928 press. The wine was matured for 20 months in French oak hogsheads and barriques. Bottled in March 2018.
Colour: Deep ruby.
Nose: Lovely aromas of mint, blackberry, clove
Palate: Rich and concentrated dark flavours of
mulberry and dark currants. Supported by fine-textured
chalky tannins and supple minerality that linger on
Vintage 2018 began with good winter and early spring rainfall preparing the vines for the summer ahead. In late spring, the weather began to warm up and flowering conditions were moderate but later than most years. The summer was extremely dry and veraison was late to commence but came on quickly as temperatures in late January climbed. The final ripening period of February and early March continued to be dry however temperatures were mild and conditions were ideal for steady ripening and flavour development.
Soils are red/grey sandy loam over complex geology comprising quartz and ironstone gravels and calcareous sandstone.
13.66 tonnes of Grenache grapes were hand harvested on the 2nd, 10th and the 19th of March. After a short period of skin contact the grapes were crushed, de-stemmed and lightly pressed in our traditional 1928 basket press.
The juice was fermented at cool temperatures to maximise freshness and retain delicate flavours. After 30 days on lees the wine was racked and ready for bottling in early June.
Colour: Pale salmon pink.
Nose: Vibrant aromas of strawberries, rose petals and
Palate: Delicate berry fruits, mandarin, nicely textured
with a touch of spice, crunchy acidity and a nice
Buy our new releases now here before they sell out!