I present another instalment in the continuing quest of making 2017 ‘The Year of Grenache’ because in South Australia we are incredibly fortunate to have the old vine resources and the grapes that were once blended away into GSM.
Today, Grenache is increasingly bottled as a single–variety wine offering great drinkability and a profound sense of place. The Hentley Farm Old Legend Grenache is one such wine with vines anchored deep into the hallowed soils of the Western Ridge above their winery in Seppeltsfield.
For too many years we tended to treat Grenache–like Shiraz, belting the bejesus out of it with pump–overs and heavy–handed cellar work and the resulting wines were taut, over–extracted beasties showing none of the perfume and panache of the best wines from overseas.
In recent times there has been a shift in thinking and we are now producing Grenache that would have any self–respecting French winemaker nervously looking over their shoulder.
For starters, it looks very Pinot–esque in the glass with a beautiful, light cherry hue and perfume. The fruit aromas are in the red spectrum – cherry, plum, redcurrant and raspberry, cut through with hints of Asian spice, gingerbread, purple flowers and light notes of Turkish delight and earth. The inclusion of a small percentage of whole bunches in the ferment opens things up on the palate and shows plenty of crunch and vibrancy and a distinct savoury edge to its character.
It’s a wine that seems very comfortable in its own skin; lovely fruit weight, spicy and intriguing and savoury and textured. Drink up.
HENTLEY FARM 2016 The Old Legend Grenache
Images: Courtesy Hentley Farm