30 year old vines planted on red-metal soils, in the Bridge Pa triangle, farmed meticulously by friend, mentor, and inspiration, Chris Howell. A luscious, but diligent vintage.
Hand-picked, 100% destemmed, transferred by gravity to tank. Ambient soak of 4 days, then inoculated with a vineyard-sourced pied de cuve. Warm (27C) fermentation, 27.5 day cuvaison. Natural, spring malolactic. Twelve months on original lees in used French oak barrels, predominantly hogsheads (350L); bottled unfined and unfiltered with a touch of sulphur pre bottling. 14% alcohol, 290 cases produced.
Deep, luminous, very dark ruby.
Toasted spices – cinnamon, cumin, coriander seed – and fresh raspberry coulis; also a note of balsam. Lifted and already expressive.
Almost North African in its flavour profile: pomegranate, copious spice, black olive, dried orange peel. Less richly fruity than previous vintages, presenting a fine, complex touch. This will be fascinating to match with food, given its elegant, multifaceted nature.