Country: Australia Region:South Australia Vintage: 2012
Varietal: Grenache/Garnacha Category: Red Wine Color: Red
"Stephen Pannell has gone from being one of the best and brightest of the new generation of Australian winemakers to being one of the most lauded of all Australian winemakers in a very short space of time. In 2014, he won the fabled Jimmy Watson trophy, the most prestigious wine award in Australia, given annually to the producer of the best one-year-old dry red wine in the Royal Melbourne Wine Show, the top gong at the Alternative Varietals Wine Show and had one of his wines named 'Financial Review' wine of the year. 2014 also saw him move into his own winery in McLaren Vale, as well as refine further his style. Steve's star is shining so brightly because of the way in which his style has evolved in the past three years. He now owns 36 hectares of vineyard, and this control over his fruit has enabled him to take quality to an even higher level.
One of the prime factors behind his success is the freshness in all his wines, something he achieves by picking earlier. ""I can only pick early due to better viticulture"", he says. He is looking for the varietal 'stamp' rather than 'varietal' character in his wines, hence his move to blends such as the Grenache/Shiraz/Touriga, where the sum is greater than the component parts. And because of this fresher 'stamp', he is looking to reduce the oak influence in his wines so has, like many of the best producers, moved to larger, more neutral oak.
It is difficult to pick out a star among his wines. The Grenache/Shiraz/Touriga has brilliant colour and is fresh and lifted on the nose with soft, supple tannins on the palate.
The 2015 Tempranillo/Touriga is his best example yet of this blend, which is 46% Tempranillo, 42% Touriga and 12% Tinto Cao. ""The more I work with Touriga, the bigger a part of this blend it becomes"", explains Steve.
The 2012 'The Vale' is a blend of 67% Shiraz and 33% Grenache. It has superb aromatics, beautiful definition on the palate, lithe tannins and great length. A study in restraint and power, he has called it 'The Vale', as he thinks this blend is what McLaren Vale does best. It is difficult to argue with him after tasting this wine. His stand-alone Grenache is now viewed by James Halliday as Australia's greatest example of this wonderful variety. It is ripe and full with lovely grainy tannins on the palate.
The 2014 Adelaide Hills Syrah has an aromatic lift and supple tannins. This wine in particular shows how far Australian wine has come, and that road is being mapped by producers like Steve Pannell."
Product Features: Sustainable;Vegan;Vegetarian
Product Allergens: Sulphites
Winemaker: Stephen Pannell
Stephen Pannell's region of choice for red wines is McLaren Vale, where he can work with old vine Grenache and Shiraz. This Grenache is sourced from a single vineyard of 70+ year-old vines that are simply managed, without pesticides, to ensure optimal expression of the fruit. The vineyards are on deep sand with a north westerly exposure and are simply managed, without pesticides, to ensure the optimal expression of the fruit.
The fruit was hand-harvested, crushed and traditionally vinified in small open top fermenters, with no additions other than cultured yeast to optimise flavour extraction during fermentation. Temperatures remained between a minimum of 15°C and a maximum of 35°and lasted for 14 days, during which time the cap was hand plunged and pumped over. The pressings were kept out of the final blend and the wine was aged for 14 months in old French oak puncheons.
An extraordinary, highly perfumed wine with an assortment of heady aromas of musk, red fruits, Turkish delight and dried woody herbs. Succulent, juicy and medium-bodied, the palate is long and consistent with integrated gritty tannins providing a balanced finish.
Food Suggestion: Will handle strongly flavoured foods especially red meats and cheese.
Closure: Stelvin ABV:14%