(750ml) Adelaide Hills, SA
Little known in Europe, and virtually unsighted in Australia, Grenache Gris is a sport of Grenache. It’s leaves, structure and propensity for producing large crops is the same as for Grenache Noir. We received 200 potlings in 2015 and gave them a cool spot on virgin soil east of our big river gums. It bursts and flowers later than our other varieties and produces way too many bunches! To ensure full flavour concentration we keep crops very low by severe shoot-thinning in late October and also by cutting off the lowest (and biggest) inflorescences as soon as they are easy to remove. The berries turn a beautiful dusky grey soon after veraison, and as they approach ripeness, acquire a bright crimson star on their bottoms; this coincides with the time of picking – about 12.5 baumé. In late April the fruit was selectively hand-picked by a lively old man and taken 5 minutes up the road to Jackson Farrow at Lodestone Winery in Mt Torrens where he had it chilled, whole-bunch pressed, clarified and then barrel-fermented at 14 C for seventeen days. He lees-stirred it fortnightly over 6 months before bottling in early December. It had minimal interventions and was not put through malo. It’s smooth despite the high natural acidity and bursts with varietal character: yellow plum, apple, pear and fennel leaf. Only 290 bottles were produced – and it’s restricted so more people can enjoy it.