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Tempranillo is one of winemaker Justin McNamee’s fortés.
From his vantage point high atop a hill at Seaview, Justin has scouted a brilliant locale for his Tempranillo vineyard. These vines yield a rustic and expressive version of this Iberian variety that is at once highly complex and highly drinkable.
This is a testament to the changing face of McLaren Vale wine. A class act red wine made from a variety other than Shiraz or Grenache.
A smashing example of Tempranillo, here. Made in small amounts and in hot demand, this won’t be around for long.
What It Tastes Like
This is smooth with tannin, velvety in feel. It leaps from the glass with flavours of cola, sarsaparilla and black cherry. It’s svelt and lithe in style, medium bodied but with some muscle built for drinking now or keeping for the medium term. Makes a compelling case for McLaren Vale Temp. Drinkability is through the roof.
Tempranillo - the precarious co-mingling of good and evil both on a vine and its personality in the glass akin to Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. On heavy ground it can behave like a feral triffid yet on the right plot this infinitely low yielding, Iberian icon is an interpretation of a landscape more than most. Our Tempranillo vineyard is set amongst the clutches of a rocky, windswept ridge exposed to the Gulf.
With ball-bearings for berries amidst very tight bunches, this wine has amplified masculinity, ripe flavours and great presence well after the last drop leaves the palate. Warm flavours of black cherry compote with splash of kirsch, tart blood orange, toasted dried spices and fresh tobacco leaf. Vibrant pomegranate toned acidity gives the wine a racing pulse – it feels deliciously fresh – though at the same time, the complex blend of components feel well integrated along Tempranillo’s signature gravelly tannin.
The juxtaposition of dark and light keep on going: stepping into a Moorish palace garden from the parched sundried landscape. A refreshing cooling effect of the water feature set among ancient olive, fig and bay trees, cascading jasmine, intricate design woven into the interior mosaics. Our Tempranillo: at the heart of the delights of the sultans. Aromas of jamon Serrano, lavender, dried sage, sun worn dusty limestone walls infiltrate the senses. Be prepared for an extended journey in the cellar with this one; it’s a stayer and may take a while to settle into its stride.
Closure: Screw Cap
Bottle Size: 750ml
Alcohol: Drink Until: 2022
About the Producer
Samuel’s Gorge is one of McLaren Vale’s best-kept secrets. There, in his quiet neck of the woods, winemaker Justin McNamee is on a mission to build “wines that are distinctly Australian with reference to the old world for texture, complexity and harmony.” They are scarcely available but highly renowned, the Shiraz and Grenache considered his fortè alongside his stellar examples of Tempranillo and Graciano. These are wines with a distinct personality and a rustic feel. A unique offering from this diverse South Australian region.
The South Australian region of McLaren Vale is famous for its powerful red wines. Shiraz and Grenache have thrived for years in the Vale’s sandy soils. Nowadays, the region’s varietal diversity has majorly increased, the coastal location and warm climate proving perfect for a new wave of varieties from Italy, Spain and Portugal. The success of varieties such as Nero d’Avola, Tempranillo, Touriga Nacional, and Fiano has transformed McLaren Vale into one of the country’s most vibrant wine scenes. It’s where tradition meets innovation and it is producing some of the Australia’s finest wines.
Tempranillo is a hot-blooded Spanish variety that has found a happy home in many Australian wine regions. Typically, Tempranillo will be medium bodied, showing silky darker fruits and tannins riddled with exotic spices. The wines are more-ish and incredibly well suited to alfresco Australian dining. Unsurprisingly, Tempranillo is one of the country’s most popular emerging varieties and is set to have a big future on Australian shores.
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