2021 The Smart Vineyard Clarendon Grenache
"Gorgeous. Perfumed. Floral. Substance." - Erin Larkin, Robert Parker Wine Advocate - 95+ Points
A layered and floral nose of fresh lavender, Thai basil, blood orange and red cherry. The palate has a beautiful structure balanced with a bright pomegranate like acidity, pink lady apple skin, Chinese five spice and a lingering savoury finish.
We experienced an almost textbook growing season over 2020/2021 with rainfall back at long term averages and mild weather over flowering which allowed for good fruit set leading to above average yields.
Over the ripening period we experienced cooler than normal weather leading to an extended time on vine to develop some great varietal characters with some power in the fruit whilst maintaining bright natural acidities. The tannin structure in the reds this vintage is a highlight.
A single vineyard Grenache sourced from Bernard Smart’s vineyard in Clarendon, McLaren Vale. The dry grown bush vines were planted in 1922 on loamy soils over red-brown clay and bedrock. Vineyard is situated at 230m above sea level on a South-East facing slope.
Fruit was hand harvested, de-stemmed and whole berry sorted into stainless steel open fermenters. The whole berry ferment spent 10 days on skins, during which time it was gently plunged to ensure optimum extraction whilst maintaining the delicate aromatics. Wine was basket pressed off of skins before maturation and malolactic fermentation on lees to retain fruit purity and freshness. Vegan friendly
Asian style braised beef
Robert Parker Wine Advocate, Erin Larkin
"Tasted alongside the Trott Vineyard Grenache (Blewitt Springs), the 2021 Smart Vineyard Grenache Clarendon is equally exciting and delicious for very different reasons. I mentioned the respect that producers have for Sue Trott; this is equal to the affection and respect they have for Bernard Smart and his son, who tend to this bush-vine vineyard in Clarendon. Here, the fruit is a very different profile; the soils are responsible for a more concentrated, bloodier, more velvety style. Texturally seductive, spicy and moving to mellifluous, it has a core of fresh blood, raspberry, black tea, red liquorice and pink peppercorn. Gorgeous. Perfumed. Floral. Substance."
The Wine Front, Gary Walsh
"Dry grown bush vines planted in 1922. Pure, bright expression of Grenache. Cherry, dried cranberry, pepper and aromatic herbs. Medium-bodied, a little sappy, fresh red fruits, tight pumice stone tannin, spice and sage, a crisp and stony finish of excellent length. A little nervy, but refreshing and full of energy. A few years more in bottle will see it blossom. Excellent."
Halliday Wine Companion, Ned Goodwin
“Among the very oldest and certainly the coolest vineyard in the Vale. The near-vertiginous bush vines on loamy, sandy ironstone are a joy to behold. Lilac and white pepper perfume. Kirsch, rosemary and thyme. The mid palate needs just a bit more stuffing. The fruit, perhaps, half a degree of ripeness.”