2016 Bass River Merlot (Gippsland, Victoria)
Bass River is tiny winery that bears a resemblance to a small domaine in South Gippsland - in size, approach, passion and very often in the glass. The vignerons - The Butera Family, emphasis being placed on producing small quantities of premium wines grown only from the estate vineyard, expressing terroir and organic principles to hand craft distinctive regional wines.
The land is bordered by the Bass River and the southern end of the Strzelecki Ranges. The vineyard is ideally located experiencing cool conditions from the nearby maritime elements. The Butera family has nurtured the land since 1983, with three hectares of vines following some 15 years later in 1998 to construct the House Block. A further three hectares were planted on the west bank of the Bass River in 2006. These two parcels of vines provide the unique character of Bass River wines.
We invite you to share in our journey as we continue to blend our grapes with the season to produce Bass River's finest wines, to continue to explore the evolution of our winemaking and the pleasure of enjoying good wine in good company.
2018 Gundog Estate Hilltops No.1 Shiraz (Hilltops, New South Wales)
Gundog Estate is a boutique producer of premium Semillon and Shiraz.
Sourcing fruit from some of the best vineyards in the Hunter, Hilltops and Canberra wine regions in New South Wales.
"We engage passionate growers that work tirelessly to deliver the best fruit possible. Our growers also firmly believe in sustainable vineyard practices, with a view to leaving the land in a better condition for the next generation.
In the winery, we employ a thoughtful combination of new and old world practices to deliver high quality, innovative wines. These wines represent some of the best examples of regional, modern Australian style, produced on a boutique scale. Fermentation with naturally occurring yeast, and partial fermentation of whites on skins, are two key practices we have implemented to great effect. With our reds, fermentation in open tanks, hand plunging, and shorter maturation periods in premium French oak puncheons illustrate a combined traditional / modern approach to winemaking that helps us to deliver wines that strike a fine balance between fruit flavour and complexity. Ultimately, we seek to produce quality wines that tell a story of the season and region. The wines should offer drinking appeal from day one, but also have the potential age gracefully."
2014 Domaine de Mouscaillo Pinot Noir (Limoux, France)
Mouscaillo is a domaine built out of strong character by the aptly named Pierre and Marie-Claire Fort on an exceptional terroir - the high altitude, steep slopes of Roquetaillade. With nearly fifteen years of experience, the Forts have been crafting astonishing, pure, and ageworthy Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Crémant from their unique vineyards at the crossroads of the mediterranean and oceanic climates. Pierre Fort comes from a family of vignerons dating back countless generations, who typical of the region sold their crop off to the local cave cooperative. Being of strong and independent character, ever since he could remember, Pierre wanted to vinify his own wines, but lacked the knowledge and experience. In 1987, the couple left Limoux to gain experience working at other domaines, eventually landing in Pouilly-Fumé where they befriended Didier Dagueneau. After a trip to visit Roquetaillade, Didier convinced them to finally make their own wines. In 2003, they drove 500 kilos of Chardonnay in their air-conditioned van up from Limoux and produced a micro-cuvée chez Dagueneau, which Didier was happy to share a taste with many of his customers.
After this auspicious start, the Fort family began their own domaine in 2004, and now have 6 hectares of vines between two parcels with astonishing views of the snow-capped Pyrenées- the North-facing Le Mouscaillo (which means Little Fly in Occitan), and the South-facing Saint Pierre. Over a decade later, they have honed their craft, and are quietly making some of the most ageworthy, ambitious, and delicious whites of the region. The next generation has also returned to the domaine : their son Thomas and his wife Camille joined the effort in 2017 after studying ecology and winemaking, passionate about the region and the domaine, and ready to continue the work started by Pierre and Marie-Claire.
2015 Cirelli Montepulciano (Abruzzo, Italy)
The sea is only 8 kilometers away and rolling hills, vineyards and olive groves surround the variegated landscape of the town of Atri in the Abruzzo region where our farmland lies. Nearby, national parks, woods and badlands, all wonderfully preserved, are waiting to be discovered in the majestic silence that seems to characterize this region of Italy suspended in time and space. Cirelli Farms is the name of our IMC*-certified organic farmland situated on 22 hectares of fertile land. Everything produced on our farm is done so respecting the sustainable natural cycles of our olive groves, vineyards, organic horticultural crop fields and animal breeding. Crop rotation, a period of rest for the soil, fertilization and livestock grazing are only some of the vital steps in the process of producing wine (in terracotta wine jars), olive oil, organically grown fruit and vegetables and meat of the finest quality. The constant pursuit of quality and sustainability begins in the vineyards where our objective is to bring out the best of every single vine. No small feat considering our commitment to respecting the environment in every phase of wine making. We ban the use of herbicides and chemical fertilizers or any other product that does not conform with our ideas of organic farming and with the plant’s natural phytosanitary defense system.
The fertility of the soil is managed through organic fertilization and the use of Biodynamic Preparation 500 Cow Horn manure. The grapes are handpicked and the grapes are also manually selected. *(Istituto Mediterraneo di Certificazione – Mediterranean Certificate Institute)
2017 Tentenublo Xerico Vinaspre (Rioja, Spain)
Tentenublo was established in 2011 by Roberto Oliván and is located in Rioja Alavesa at the foothills of the Sierra Cantabria Mountains. Roberto inherited six hectares of vineyards from his mother at the age of 16 and is now the fourth generation to work the family vineyards. He currently works eight and a half hectares across 22 plots and they vary from 15 year old parcels up to sections over 100 years old. These plots are situated in the villages of Viñaspre and Lanciego.
He is now 33 years old and has come a long way by listening to the elders of the region, observing nature and by working for others in order to gain the confidence to manage this project. The winery is very simple and everything is done by hand here. The wines could qualify for organic although Roberto says he has no time for the official certification. As you can imagine the vineyards aren’t treated with pesticides or herbicides. Roberto is trying to produce wines of the place rather than fall into the classification system of Rioja.
Expect to see freshness and fruit in these wines which are a throwback to Rioja of 40 to 50 years ago.
2015 A.A. Badenhorst Secateurs Red (Swartland, South Africa)
AA Badenhorst Family Wines are grown, made and matured on Kalmoesfontein farm in the Swartland appellation of South Africa. The 28ha of old bushvines grow in the Siebritskloof part of the Paardeberg mountain. The property is owned by the baie dynamic and good looking cousins Hein and Adi Badenhorst. They are originally from Constantia. Their grandfather was the farm manager of Groot Constantia for 46 years. Their fathers were born there and farmed together in Constantia, during the days when people still ate fresh vegetables and Hanepoot grapes, drank Cinsault and there were a lot less traffic lights and hippies still had a presence. On Kalmoesfontein it is back to basics, using traditional winemaking equipment and old cement kuipe. “We make wines with immense character. We’re using what we can afford. We are making the best wines we can. And we are having great experiences. I want to make something, involving interaction from my family.” Together these two have restored a neglected cellar on the farm that was last used in the 1930′s to make natural wines in the traditional manner.