This is warm climate Shiraz made with a deft hand and the vinous brushstroke of ancient vine material. Circa 1880, PF Zimmerman planted Grenache vines on his family property ‘Woodlands’ situated on the outskirts of Lyndoch. The site is around 250m above sea level with a Southerly aspect. Soil consists of deep sand over clay. The ungrafted goblet vines are hand pruned to twenty buds. Irrigation is minimal and only used in very dry years.
The fruit for this Shiraz is hand-picked around 10% is tipped into a concrete open fermenter. The balance is destemmed and lightly crushed on top. After around a week on skins, the fruit is basket pressed and transferred into one-third new French oak to undergo MLF (malolactic fermentation). The wine is then left on light lees to mature for eight months before racking back to the same oak and matured for another nine months.
Langton’s Writer Ian Desmond sits down with Master of Wine Ned Goodwin MW to look at the Planta Circa wines from Purple Hands. The Ancestor Vine Grenache, Shiraz and Cabernet are sourced from some of the oldest plantings in Australia yet winemaker Craig Stansborough has used the fruit to make completing, contemporary wines.
Hand-picked, 10% of fruit was tipped into concrete open fermenter, balance was destemmed, lightly crushed, neutral yeast, 8 days on skins, basket-pressed and into new (33%) and used French oak, mlf, left on lees to mature for 8 months, racked then back into oak for another 9 months. Old vines planted between 1880-90 shine, producing a multifaceted shiraz, that is both humble and complex. Quiet to start, the perfume is almost faint but, yes, there is the sweet scent of violets and roses. Then all is revealed in a seamless and spectacular performance of a grape off old vines: florals, intense black fruits, full array of spices in a soothing synergy with background oak and supple tannin.
95 points, Wine Companion (February 2020)
"This is warm climate Shiraz made with a deft hand and the vinous brushstroke of ancient vine material. Boysenberry and other blue fruit aspersions sashay to darker fruit tones. Savoury elements of charcuterie, iodine, tapenade, clove, tamarind and woodsmoke swirl about the melee. The tannins, resolved, pliant and as impeccably tuned as the service on a Japanese train. Beautifully managed! The acidity, gently peppery and fresh enough to tow the fray long."
95 points, Ned Goodwin MW, August 2020
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.