Terre à Terre is proud to present its second release of Shiraz coming from its very unique close-spaced vineyard in Wrattonbully, South Australia.
This vineyard has been baptised the Crayères Vineyard, after the chalk cellars that are found throughout Xavier’s region of birth in Champagne, France. Similar natural structures are found underneath this very special vineyard, and they are now the subject of a research project led by a team from the University of Adelaide as they are full of undisturbed ancient fossilised remains.
The Crayères vineyard is located next to Tapanappa’s Whalebone Vineyard, at the top of a north-south limestone ridge in Wrattonbully, one of Australia’s most exciting regions. The Terra Rossa top-soil is characteristic of the area. This part of the vineyard was planted on rootstocks in 2008, using cuttings from the neighbouring Whalebone Vineyard and French clones, and at a relatively high density for the area (4,444 vines per hectare, similar to the density of vineyards in Saint Emilion). The fruiting wire is only 50cm above ground, which is why the local vignerons call the vines the “low vines”.
The 2015 growing season started early with very good but slow flowering conditions followed by quite warm January and February without any severe heatwaves; however, the weather was very mild from véraison to harvest for our Shiraz with 9 weeks between véraison and harvest for all varieties. The Heat Degree Days summation (calculated as the sum of the monthly daily mean minus 10°C for the months of October to April included) was estimated at 1,522 degree days, which is lower than the average for Saint Emilion (1,530 degree days).
We handpicked our Shiraz on the 17th of March 2015, picking yields of 9.03 tonnes per hectare, after bunch thinning at véraison down to 10 bunches per vine. The Shiraz was fermented in 1 8-tonne Potter fermenter and 1 small 1-tonne tub (which had 50% whole bunches), with plunging 4 times during fermentation. After 26 days of cold maceration, fermentation and post fermentation maceration, the wine was pressed off to 50% new Vallaurine barrels (Rive Droite and Rive Gauche) and 50% old French barrels where they aged for 8 months. The wine was then transferred to a 4-year-old Foudre where it aged for a further 14 months. After a light egg white fining, the wine was bottled without filtration in late February 2017.
Our 2015 Shiraz confirms the potential of the Wrattonbully wine region as an extraordinary cool climate region for Australian Shiraz, in the line of the great Shiraz from the Pyrenees and the Grampians. The 2015 vintage wine shows bright blackberry and juicy plum flavours, whilst the palate is very earthy with gorgeous supple and lingering tannins.
In bottle analysis: Alcohol = 14.5% v/v, pH = 3.63, TA = 5.1 g/L, VA = 0.41g/L
Only 280 dozen were produced.
Winemaker: Xavier Bizot
Tasting note: PDF file