2015 Growing Season experienced so many sequential days of perfect grape growing weather and has been one of the earliest harvests on record. Plentiful winter rains in 2014 were vital for the 2015 harvest. Large canopies, moderate yields and ideal ripening conditions encouraged an earlier than usual harvest free of disease.
The early harvested wines from 2015 sustained great natural acidity, ripe tannins with bright fruit flavours and spice. Another season remarkable for delivering naturally balanced wines without testing alcohols nor over ripe flavours. A very good vintage with many wines likely to demonstrate great cellaring potential.
The Tempranillo plantings are located on our Gnadenfrei and Stonewell Vineyards. First planted in 1998, this wine is produced using two clones; D8V12 and Requiena. The vineyard aspects are quite different and so too is the harvest dates for each site. The soils of Gnadenfrei are shallow weathered brown clay with pink quartzite. Stonewell has deeper soils of red/brown clay overlaying silty orange clay and weathered rock.
The winemaking and élevage [maturation] was encouraged to express a medium bodied red wine. The determination of harvest is crucial, with a rapid depletion of natural acidity the fruit must be picked as early as possible whilst ensuring tannins have ripened and adequate flavours have accumulated. The hand harvested fruit is destemmed and crushed via a chiller and allowed to cold soak for 3 days before yeast inoculation. Following a short ferment on skins the wine is pressed off before primary fermentation has completed. The wine is racked off gross lees into seasoned American Hogsheads for 12-15 months prior to bottling.
The 2015 Tempranillo leads with alluring and evolving aromas. Opening with dark cherry, raspberry liquorice and crushed autumn leaves the aromas lead to hints of tobacco leaf, pepper and coffee bean. Dark fruits and savoury tones are prominent on the palate. This wine is medium bodied, persistent and has dusty drying tannins.