||Final blend Shiraz 90% + Viognier 10%
||60 years old
Limit of 6 bottles.
A remarkable vintage, with perfect conditions from Spring right through Vintage. Veraison and fruit set conditions were optimal. The weather played its part, blessing the Hunter Valley with gentle rainfall throughout Spring for good ground moisture, then bright sunshine throughout harvest.
Made for the first time in Vintage 2013, this wine was all about making a new style – something that would show loads of personality, with lithe “feminine” charm, for my wife Amanda. Co-fermenting white and red grapes together was key to this journey. In 2014 we trialled many ferment lots using 10% and 15% portions of Viognier with Shiraz, and again it proved the more Viognier we used, the more luxurious, perfumed, and velvety the result. Each ferment vat was kept on skins for extended masceration, pressed out individually, and then barrel aged for 12 months before blending. The final result is like a bouquet of flowers: different floral aromas coming together from an array of co-ferment batches, all in beautiful harmony.
Rich with floral and spicy perfumes, firstly driven by fresh white-flower, which then reveals a fuller bouquet of rose-petal and honeysuckle. Rich black stone-fruit characters follow, with glacé cherry in front, and oak-spice registering with depth in the background. Flavours are immediately appealing, brimming with velvety black fruit, and showing luxurious texture generated by the high co-ferment proportion of Viognier. The black fruit Shiraz core is lavishly coated with a soft-chocolate mouth-feel, deliciously long with the spicy flavours of fine French oak, adding the perfect degree of gentle silken tannin to the finish. Worth keeping? – Definitely.
The rarer, more feminine partner to ‘The Kester’ Shiraz, from the same old vine vineyard. Uniquely co-fermentated with a generous 10% Viognier.