Spinifex Bête Noir Shiraz, Barossa Valley
The Bête Noir is a blend from several vineyards located across a variety of Barossa's sub-regions, with the Eastern foothills, Moppa, Moculta, and the Eden Valley all contributing. Vineyard age ranges between 25 and 120 years, with 60 years being a fair average across the blend.
All fruit was hand harvested. The proportion of whole clusters varied from "everything to nothing" depending on the vineyard, with roughly 35% in the final blended cuvée. Vinified with indigenous yeast fermentation, élevage on lees in new (25%) and seasoned French oak barrels ranging in capacity from 225 litre to 2,500 litre for 20 months prior to bottling without filtration.
"100% shiraz, the vines with an average age of 70yo, hand-picked, wild yeast whole berry and whole bunch ferment in wooden fermenters for 7-20 days, matured in French oak (20% new) for 16 months. More full-bodied than most prior releases of this wine, black fruits on the prowl, guarded by business-like tannins."
95 points, Wine Companion (February 2019)
Colonel William Light, the South Australian colony’s Surveyor-General, named the Barossa in 1837 after the site of an English victory over the French in the Spanish Peninsular War. In the mid-1800’s Silesian and English immigrants settled in the area. The Barossa itself comprises two distinct sub-regions: Eden Valley and the warmer Barossa Valley floor at 270m.The Barossa Valley enjoys a warm Mediterranean climate characterised by hot dry summers and relatively low rainfall. Cool sea breezes from the Gulf of St Vincent modify the temperature, however hot northerly winds can occasionally dominate creating considerable vine stress. Many older established vineyards are dry-grown, but supplementary irrigation is also extensively used. The valley is comprised of rich brown soils and alluvial sands. A long history of uninterrupted viticulture in the area means the Barossa valley is home to Australia’s largest concentration of old-vine Shiraz, Grenache and Mourvedre with many over 100 years old. Although most famous for Shiraz, the Barossa can also produce fragrant and deliciously fruity Grenache blends and beautifully rich, chocolatey Cabernet Sauvignons.