Tag: Graciano

McLaren Vale visit

I visited McLaren Vale briefly with my fellow MW students in November, with stops at Coriole and Noon.  Some vineyard pictures and brief comments follow.

(Above) Shiraz vines at Coriole, against a backdrop of dry fields.  Some (possible) wind damage on shoot tips on right hand side.

Fruit set on 1919 shiraz vines at Coriole.
Heavy mulching for soil moisture retention on Coriole 1919 shiraz vines.
Gobelet trained mourvèdre vines at Noon, and dry soils.
Gobelet trained graciano vines at Noon competing with grass and a row of eucalyptus trees, and requiring irrigation lines.
Dry grown, gobelet trained grenache at Noon.
Some particularly healthy looking grenache vines at Noon, the outside row showing more vigour.

Viñedos Real Rubio Crianza Rioja 2010

There’s a lot of value to be had in red Rioja. This Rioja crianza is 8 years old and an 80/20 blend of tempranillo and graciano. It saw 18 months in barrel and is from an organic vineyard. In the glass, there are aromas of game, cedar, leather, spice and red fruits. The tannins are softening, the length is good, and this wine is entering its best drinking window. A lot for $30. Rating: Very Good. Abv: 14.5%. Price: $30.50. Source: Sample. Read more: bordeauxandbeyond.com.

Granja Remelluri Rioja Gran Reserva 2009

Remelluri is a serious estate wine Rioja producer.  The Gran Reserva remains in the winery for 7 years before release, sees a substantial 27 months in barrel and is a blend of mostly tempranillo and garnacha, with cameos from graciano, moscatel, malvasia and viura.  So a blend of almost all of the Rioja varieties, red and white.  In the glass, the 2009 vintage has aromas of game, leather, truffles, plums and vanilla.  The palate has forthright tannins and good length on the finish.  The oak influence is evident at this point.  (Region: Rioja, Spain, Rating: Very Good, Drink: now to 2027, Tasted: June, 2017)

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Other vintages reviewed: 

Tasting a chambourcin; d’Arenberg The Peppermint Paddock Sparkling Red NV

Here two interests – lesser known grape varieties and wine styles – unexpectedly meet with a sparkling red blend of 63% chambourcin, 20% shiraz and 17% graciano.  Chambourcin is a hybrid grape variety (so not a vitis vinifera) that tolerates wet weather well and is winter hardy, characters that admittedly do not appear ostensibly useful in McLaren Vale.  Graciano is a minor component in red Rioja blends, but is well regarded for its contribution – adding character, extract and acidity.  Shiraz is of course exactly that – Australian for red wine.

I wasn’t sure how this would come together, but the result here is quite lively.  There’s mint, eucalyptus and mint patties on the nose.  The palate is towards off dry in impression (there’s 10g/l of residual sugar but balanced by acidity) with refreshing bubbles, supplemented by notes of plums and game together with a skinsy texture.   (Alc: 12.8%, Region: McLaren Vale, Rating: Good, Drink: now)

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Source: sample