Vintage 2015 a diary - week one!

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The earliest start to our vintage in our 26 year history - bring it on! Today vintage kicked off bright & early (actually, not so much ‘bright’ as ‘pitch black’ but that doesn’t have the same ring to it does it?) with a 4am harvesting of Marsanne from our Stonewell block. The winery guys - Mark, Peter & Alex had a ‘sleep-in’, coming in at 6am to begin the process of crushing, pressing, pumping & fermenting the grapes into wine. The tradition of morning coffee continues throughout vintage with the whole team coming together to share caffeine & the Advertiser quiz…the remaining slices of Jo’s delicious cake from yesterday are demolished by the hard-working & ever-hungry winemaking team.

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24/07/2017

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Vintage 2015 diary - week 2

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Looooong day for the guys today! Shiraz (harvested at midnight!) from Stonewell comes in today. The best bunches are hand sorted to fill a small flex-cube tank for an interesting little experiment (will this be 2015’s answer to Gobble:Gobble… we’ll have to wait & see!). This labour-intensive process takes Mark, Peaches, Alex & Baz 4 ½ hours (Oh, and with some help from yours truly - do you think 45 minutes has earned me my ‘vintage stripes’?!) The remaining Shiraz goes through the de-stemmer & into the tanks. The Dolcetto which has been in the tanks since Wednesday last week is pressed. …Event prep gets really underway - 1800 hessian circles need to be traced, ironed & then cut out.

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Vintage 2015 diary - week 3

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More Grenache is brought in, crushed & pressed immediately today. The resulting juice is actually a pale straw colour - not red or pink… huh? But Grenache is a red wine variety - right? Well, yes, but this is what the juice of the majority of red wine varieties actually looks like without skin contact. This beautiful, clean, fresh juice is destined for our rosé post-ferment (ah hah! So that’s how we make it pale these days!) Our bush-vine Grenache (if you’ve visited us you’ll know the ones - the gnarled old guys from by the front gate) are also picked, crushed & off into the fermenter they go…we leave the old folk dressed (on their skins) for a while - you know, for modesty’s sake. …There’s a fun little experiment happening in the winery (because we can't seem to sit still around this place!) Got to love having a glass of something to taste passed to you at your desk from a very excited winemaker. Just what is it? Hmmmm - you’ll have to wait & see! (yes, I know that’s annoying, but I just kind of like having secrets!)

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Vintage diary 2015 - week 4

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And so vintage continues in all its glory! We’re well over half way through it all now - but things certainly won’t be slowing down any time soon! More barrels to be filled, all the fermenters are full & all need pumping over - and there’s still more fruit on its way (most of it Grenache this week). The 1847 Shiraz, which was picked last Wednesday, is looking mighty, mighty fine. The colour from this is just outstanding & we’re all excitedly waiting for a first look at it post-fermentation.

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Vintage diary 2015 - week 5

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What’s the best thing about vintage? The excitement of seeing the months of hard work & tender loving care in the vineyard come to life - actually turning into something we can bottle. The whole bunch ferment Shiraz (from the re-worked Bethany Estate block) came out of tank to be pressed today - tasting the wine - while still inside the grape itself was a pretty amazing experience! Amazingly, after the weeks of long, long hours & hard work our minds are all still pretty sharp. We blitz the traditional morning-tea quiz (from the Advertiser) - with not a single question answered incorrectly. Well done team! And as for the intake today? 5 tonnes of Grenache!

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