The Vagabond Grenache
Blewitt Springs, McLaren Vale 2016
We're convinced that, of all of the regions of Australia, the greatest potential for Grenache greatness is in the McLaren Vale. We therefore set about finding unique plots throughout the region, looking for specific soil formations that would embue the Vagabond with finesse, varietal purity and texture.
Winter and Spring were dry and though total volume was near normal, there were few drenches. Spring was also dry with hot temperatures in October followed by a milder November in which the fruit set well with good crops. Refreshing rains in late January prolonged the season more than it might have been but by early March the fruit was perfect.
From a single vineyard in Blewitt Spring, 70 year old, dry grown, bush vines planted in deep sands with some ironstone. The fruit was hand picked, 50% was wild fermented in a concrete egg which had layers of whole bunch and crushed fruit. This ferment had no mechanical extraction. The balance was wild fermented in an open fermenter with 35% whole bunches, hand plunged twice daily. This portion was aged in puncheons while the egg fermented was pressed back to the egg for maturation.
A beautifully balanced red, this is an unusually elegant take on Grenache with an almost Pinot-like delicacy, the wine is violet scented with bright red fruit on the palate, subtle savoury oak and a warm silky finish.