- Zalto Denk'Art Bordeaux Glass
Stuart McCloskey - Tasted November 2022 “Following 2-3 hours in the decanter (highly recommended, by the way). The bouquet has come to a crossroads between primary and tertiary aromatics. There’s a wildness to the sweet fruit – I’m detecting liquor infused raspberry, mulberry, black cherries and plums. Liquorice, mocha, dried orange rind and star anise overlay the fruit beautifully. Woodsmoke, mushroom and the faintest whiff of clove rounds off the bouquet to provide a real sense of an autumnal larder filled with preserved goodies for the long months ahead. The palate is silky and shows powerful Grenache in a different light. The fruit is sweet – pastille-like with acidity and softened tannins providing grip and texture. I imagine these would have been colossal upon release. This flows forever and shows no signs of slipping away. I really like the pepperiness, musky game, truffle – the palate feels as wild and as autumnal as the bouquet. Perfect, given the time of year. Served using Zalto Bordeaux glassware.”
Clarendon Hills Romas Terroir
The Clarendon Hills Romas Old Vine Grenache patch hails from the oldest and rockiest section of the Blewitt Springs vineyard. With a small parcel planted in 1920 and the majority of the lowermost rows planted in the 1940’s. This selection of the greater single vineyard yields an absolutely magical expression. An extraordinary expression that every year highlights possibly the best terroir in Blewitt Springs, McLaren Vale and quite possibly the world over.
There is magic in every glass of Romas and the evidence is there in every barrel tasting for each new vintage. The wine is always hand picked with specific rows selected from the start, then wild yeast fermented and macerated for an extended period of approximately 5 weeks. Before being carefully, carefully pressed into a matrix of generally mature 3-6 year old barriques for 18 months. Extra patience is required for the herringbone like extract to fully integrate in the winery. The wine on release is wonderfully illuminated and the extract is polished to a point of perfection.
One of the world’s best Old Vine Grenache vineyards
Gnarly old vines planted in the 1940’s produce microscopic yields along with amazing acidity and present an acidity profile similar to that of a white wine. The density of the rocks and soil up in this part of the vineyard defines Romas and warrants its isolation from other parts of the vineyard and position as flagship Grenache expression at Clarendon Hills. The heavy presence of ironstone, quartz and shale rocks limit the size and yields of these vines and the resulting wine reflects the mineral elements.
The expression we receive from this highly concentrated part of the vineyard is utterly hedonistic and offers mineral complexity for the wine collectors and enthusiasts out there. Typically each vintage yields a vivid kaleidoscope of fresh cut roses, Turkish delight, musk, sherbert, blood orange, blueberry, raspberry and kirsch fruit across an effortless powerful palate aloft with silk and ultra-fine talcum like extract. Nuances of crushed rock, flint, graphite, iodine and ferrous like rust take this expression to the next level. Despite the majesty of the tasting note the profile is medium-weighted and mirrors an ‘iron fist in the velvet glove’ analogy. Amazing both right now to drink and also for the next 20 years in the cellar.
Clarendon Hills Romas Grenache 2007
McLaren Vale, Australia
At this McLaren Vale property he is now joined by sons Adam and Alex who help with management and winemaking.
Production is dedicated to varietal wines from vineyards that have exceptional soils, aspect and climatic conditions that aid optimal berry development and expression of the individual grape variety. Most vine stock is original French cuttings of more than 90 years old, which are dry farmed to prevent dilution of juice concentration. Harvesting of fruit is done by hand followed by rigorous sorting before pressing. Roman insists on using indigenous yeasts in the fermentation process as a means of expressing a sense of place and identity. This philosophy carries through to the pre-bottling stage where the wine sees no fining or filtration for maximum flavour intensity.
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