Aster has a gentle aroma of strawberries and plums, ripe but not over-ripe. There is the mildest whiff of spice too. The palate is silky and supple with those lovely red fruits swimming through the middle. Lovely, almost imperceptible tannins frame the wine and make it a most delicious drink. You can chill the wine if it's hot. The gentle tannins won't be disturbed by this process.
We had terrific winter and spring rains leading up to vintage 2017, a marked contrast to the previous year, proving once again if proof were needed, that every vintage is different. We had a cool early part to spring too, combined with the spring rain. Flowering was about 3 weeks later than the previous year which of course meant that vintage was 3 weeks later than normal, or as some old locals said sagely, back to the old normal. There was a very long and slow ripening period which is terrific for allowing grapes to develop their flavours. We had a pretty dry February March and April, once the spring rains finished in mid-January. Overall a late vintage with some incredibly promising reds and outstanding whites.
Our Pinot Noir vineyard is the last of a dying breed in McLaren Vale. If you visited the Vale in the 1980’s you would have found a lot more vineyards dedicated to this variety, The grapes mainly supplied wineries with sparkling base. As the cooler regions developed in both SA and VIC, our region dedicated itself to Shiraz, and Cabernet to a lesser degree. Our Bradens vineyard is practically at sea level, and Pinotphiles amongst you will know full well that the higher the altitude and the colder the climate the better it is for Pinot Noir. However, we make our Pinot with a nod towards Beaujolais (made with Gamay, not Pinot however, just to confuse you) and aim for a fresh bright light and varietal style. We achieve this admirably by picking the Pinot a little leaner and fermenting a proportion of them anaerobically (carbonic maceration) which helps soften the tannins. The wine spends about 6 months in older oak.
Picking Date: 6th and 7th March 2017
Bottling Date: 9th October 2017