Graillot Heathcote Syrah 2015
6 PACK BUY. Magnificent elegant and fragrant Heathcote shiraz made by France’s most respected growers Alain Graillot from Hermitage
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Graillot Syrah is a collaboration between Bibendum importer, Robert Walters and Alain Graillot, one of France’s most respected wine growers from the leading Domaine in Crozes Hermitage. The Wine Spectator said of Graillot “ ..in the space of 17 years Alain Graillot has established a reputation for making his Crozes Hermitage the most sought after of the appellation. ..They are a special favourite with the most prestigious restaurants in France….”
Alain and Robert were very attracted by the idea of coming together to produce a sophisticated, restrained and linear expression of Australian Syrah from what they felt was a “special piece of dirt” in Heathcote Victoria. Alain Graillot, was recently described as “… the man who makes Syrah that tastes like Pinot…” His obsession with elegance shines through in his wines. The conditions of Alain’s involvement were simple: only if he was able to produce the highest quality wine with the kind of elegance for which he is renowned and that he likes to drink, would he be willing to put his name to this project. Initially fruit was sourced from across a single vineyard, yet now they work with only one plot (nicknamed ‘Clos Graillot’) an east-facing parcel of vines … the wines from this parcel consistently stood out for their fragrance, lacy fruit and elegant tannins. The vines are tended without any herbicides or pesticides. The grapes are handpicked, left to ferment without any yeast additions and are not fined or filtered. Almost no new oak has been used and sulphur is kept to a minimum (none was used at bottling for example).
From the producer … “Although both this and Syrah No 2 come from the same, 3.3 hectare vineyard (dubbed the “Clos Graillot”), the Graillot Syrah tends to come from the top of the block while the Syrah No 2 typically comes from the fruit further down the slope. Ultimately however, both of these wines result from a barrel selection and for the Graillot we are aiming to produce the most pure, perfumed, elegant yet intense wine possible; a wine of great finesse and yet with excellent aging potential.”
2015 marks the second release for the Graillot Australia wines with Luke Lambert heading up the winemaking team. As always, this wine is from the same plot of vines in the Colbinabbin area of Heathcote, as the Graillot Syrah No. 2. This wine reflects a barrel selection (often corresponding to sections of the vineyard) with the aim being to select the most refined, perfumed and elegant barrels for the Graillot label. From 2017 this all changed but we’ll wait for the ‘17 releases to explain that.
Handpicked, a combination of whole bunch and destemmed fruit was transferred to open top fermenters of various sizes (from one tonne ‘flower pots’ to four tonne fermenters). It was then pressed off to large format, older wood for ageing for 13 months. No new oak was used in the ageing. It contained around 50% whole bunches, although the aim is certainly not to have any ‘stems’ character. Instead, we hope to utilise the finesse, structure and perfume that whole bunches can bring. It’s a wine that is now starting to open. The opposite of a ‘blockbuster’ style, this is a very savoury, sappy wine with mulberry, iodine and subtle autumnal and graphite notes. The finish is cool and vibrant with powdery tannins. No sulphur was added during the ferment or maturation, no yeast additions, no temperature control, and the wines were bottled without fining or filtration.
95 points, Campbell Mattinson, The Wine Front “This is a fabulous shiraz/syrah. One sip and I was hooked. It bursts with aroma, is rich with fruit, comes laden with all manner of spice notes and extends gorgeously out and through the finish. It’s a complete wine. It plays a Siren song for the Heathcote region as a whole. It has texture, graphite, nut and herb notes oozing from its pores. Blue and black berried fruits. Just simply beautiful.”
RRP $45 **SPECIAL 6 PACK PRICE … Only $35.99 when you buy 6 of this wine**
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