I went on a bit of a hunt preceding World Grenache Day on 20th September this year, for an article that never got written. All was not lost; Cirillo’s The Vincent was a particularly delicious discovery.
Cirillo The Vincent Grenache 2012 Barossa Valley
Made from 80-year-old vines, this is a cracking wine – especially for the price. Pale ruby in colour, it has a pretty classic young Grenache nose – white pepper, raspberries and red plums. It’s little more than medium bodied, plush, juicy and generous on the palate, bursting with plums and soft red fruit. The tannins are ripe and slightly powdery and the finish pretty, long and with a touch of spice. Deliciously drinkable.
RRP $20 – Alcohol 14.5% – Tasted 18/09/13
St Hallett Old Vine Grenache 2010 Barossa Valley
Medium ruby in colour, this wine was a subtle surprise. It was picked early, ending up at a relatively modest 13.5% alcohol. The label also draws attention to extended time on skins and a bit of ‘whole bunch action’, some stalks and stems in the fermentation to boost tannin and savouriness.
The nose is floral, with red cherries, raspberries – quite Pinot Noir-like – and a hint of black pepper and liquorice. That ‘pinosity’ is also there on the palate, which is soft and juicy and kind of cool (as in climate). Not a term associated with the Barossa or Grenache. We’re still talking raspberries, red cherries and blackberries, with a little bit of oak smoothness. The chalky tannins and fresh acid see the fruit through to finish alongside black pepper, gentle spice and a bit of cherrystone tang.
RRP $25 – Alcohol 13.5% – Tasted 20/09/13
Maxwell Four Roads Grenache 2012 McLaren Vale
Maxwell of McLaren Vale makes some excellent wines that generally offer great value for money. This Grenache is no exception, a clear expression of the grape variety and region and totally drinkable to boot. These vines were planted 90 years ago, high up in the vineyard. The intense nose features violets, plums and red cherries and the palate is full bodied, concentrated and focused. Plenty of juicy, fresh raspberry fruit with a bit of spice and chocolate coming in.
RRP $22 – Alcohol 14.5% – Tasted 18/09/13