Blog 30: McLaren Vale Winemakers talk & taste Vintage 2011

The tasting underway- Colin Kay (Kay Brothers), Michael Paxton (Paxtons), Paul Carpenter (Wirra), Mike Brown (Gemtree), Greg Clack (Haselgroves), Nick Haselgrove (Australian Winemakers), Shelley Torresan (Yangarra)

Hosted by the fabulous Wirra Wirra tribe, a group of McLaren Vale winemakers gathered today to taste (blind) and talk about their 2011 wines. Some 50 of McLaren Vales finest, from winemaking legend Colin Kay right through to some of our gun cellarhands, bought along a bottle to share, tasted and then discussed over a beer from local brewers Goodieson.

Some of McLaren Vales finest join the discussion- Joch Bosworth (Battle of Bosworth), Justin Lane (Alpha Box & Dice), Jess Hardy & Seamus O'Fathartaigh (Loom Wine), Charlie Seppelt (Tintara), Pete Fraser & Shelley Torresan (Yangarra), Ben Brooks, Bryn Richards (Chapel Hill), even Wirra's winery dog was involved!
What a great region to work in where we can all share our wines & experiences, so that we all can grow as individual winemakers and help to improve our region even more. Best comment was from Wirra’s Paul Carpenter- “I just want to make the best wine I possibly can, and I want all of McLaren Vale to be doing the same thing.” Was also happy to hear from Matt Koch & Andrew Hales. These guys get to see fruit/wines from all over Australia with their work for Treasury Wine Estates (new name for the company who owns Penfolds, Rosemount, Wolf Blass, Wynns, Lindemans, etc). They commented that McLaren Vale wines, in particular Cabernet, have stood up extremely well in 2011.
Was great to look at the wines from 2011- still sitting in barrel and quite young on their journey. There were some stunning Grenache & Shiraz- and exciting other varietals- I especially enjoyed a very spicy Graciano & a vibrant Barbera.
Had me thinking how many years winemaking experience was in the one room- I stopped adding it up when I reached 200 years….pretty exciting stuff.

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