Background: Terracotta gets its name from the soils on which the fruit is grown. These red clay soils are renowned for their lo fertility thus reducing the yield of the wine and increasing fruit concentration.
Fruit Source: This wine is made from a single vineyard in the heart of Pokolbin. This 12 year old vineyard is un-irrigated and located behind the ‘Graveyard’ vineyard on the ‘terracotta’ coloured clay soils of the area.
Fermentation & Maturation: 8% Viognier fruit was added to the Shiraz and allowed to co-ferment in 2 tonne open vats. When fermentation had ceased, the wine was then pressed out and transferred into a combination of 40% new French oak and 60% used French oak. The wine was matured for 20 months then bottled with minimum filtration after a light egg fining.
Winemakers Comments: 750 kg per acre was the yield from the ‘terracotta’ shiraz vineyard in 2003. The drought conditions and warm ripening period ensured low yields and maximum fruit concentration.
The nose is lifted with no obvious Viognier apricot. The palate is full bodied, clean and lively, with plentiful fine tannins giving it good structure and the ability to improve over many years.
Cellaring: Medium – Long term 12+
What the experts say:
“Eight percent viognier’s been taken up beautifully – smells and tastes of intense plum and raspberry with splashes of Asian spice. Chewy tannins are assertive but this is very pure, very clean, very intense.”. Drink: 2008-2017.
Campbell Mattinson – Winefront Monthly – Sept/Oct 2004.
“floral viognier life, sweet fruit, textured, powerful”.
“A classic old-fashioned Hunter Valley “burgundy”. The colour has a distinct tawny rim; the bouquet has earth, tar and roast-meat complexities. The palate is rich and savoury with fully ripe, fruit flavours backed by drying tannins. Stylish stuff. Now to 12-plus years.”
Huon Hooke – SMH Good Living – 10th February 2009
“Semi-mature reds of this quality are rare. Nicely developed with tertiary complexities, this is loaded with earthy, leathery, roast-meat, savoury Hunter character. There are a lot of tannins, balanced by a core of sweet, ripe fruit.”
Wine Magazine – Top 100 New Releases – June / July 2009
2006 Penguin Wine Guide