The fruit comes from our Wallcliffe (48 years old), Trinders (30 years old) and Crossroads (15 years old) vineyards. The typical soils of these vineyards are geologically ancient, free draining sandy loams with a high percentage of lateritic gravel. Meticulously careful hand work on the canopy ensured perfect exposition for the fruit, which in 2018, allowed ultra-fine tannin development, at modest ripeness levels with beautifully balanced acids.
Replenishing winter rains recharged our vineyard sites leading into calm weather for fruit set that gave well balanced crops on the vines. Mild in nature, 2018 was warmer than 2017 allowing fruit to ripen earlier and very evenly with very low disease pressure, and due to a healthy Marri tree blossoming event, very little bird pressure. An Indian summer, with no heat spike events, allowed for ideal physiological development conditions and the potential for a classic vintage.
The fruit is destemmed from 70% to 100% (up to 30% whole cluster inclusion) and lightly crushed to a combination of open and closed top fermenters. The ferments proceed with either wild or selected yeasts and operations are decided day by day without recipe to optimize potential and complexity. Post fermentation macerations can be long allowing seamless tannin development before light basket pressing. Malolactic fermentation takes place in French oak barriques (5% new) and the wine is aged on lees (fermentation solids) for 16 months; then blended and bottled with minimal filtration and sulfur addition.
14.8% alcohol, 5.70 g/l total acidity, 3.71 pH.