As usual, the McLaren Vale fruit is crushed, loaded to tanker via a chiller with the 20hr road trip being valuable cold soak time. Fermented in 4 tonne open stainless fermenters and hand plunged twice a day. The Hunter Shiraz has the same processing with a cold soak and ferment at 25-28C. Both wines matured in French oak with an average of 30% new oak, using a combination of barriques, puncheons and 2700L casks.
McLaren Vale experienced a dry lead up to the 2015 harvest with December 2014 being almost rain free. Flowering and ripening was early, with picking completed in just under 2 months. We did have to monitor the Wade Block closely due to the excess heat during February, but the vines being on deep sand over clay held up well.
There was a three-week turn around in picking compared to 2014. It was a very dry winter of 2014 with only 54mm of rain from May to July. A very good budburst and spring, followed by a cold and wet December resulted in quite large canopies and disease pressure.
Thankfully, all of our fruit is handpicked and the vineyard team did a great job of getting clean, sound fruit in. This vintage is stylistically on song, a smaller production overall due to the East Coast low hanging around the end of January to early February period.
Lamb, veal and pasta.
Drinking well now but will improve with further bottle age. This wine can be cellared for many years.