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Sylvaner is rare Alsatian grape that’s found a happy home on the cool slopes of the King Valley.
It’s picked early by winemaker Syd Bradford, brought to the winery and pressed on top of freshly pressed Gewürztraminer skins. This adds a little grip and also gives a super charge to the perfume, very shrewd winemaking there by Syd.
This wine is a fresh and frisky young thing that it ideally suited to fresh seafood or as a cool tipple on a warm afternoon. Crisp, clean and sly personality; this is a lovely and interesting wine.
What It Tastes Like
Rose hip tea, some floral notes, the smell of fresh peeled lychee. It’s a delicate waft of aromas but an enchanting one. The palate tastes of lime, green apple and stones. It’s crisp and has a little crunch to the acidity. A charmer of a wine. Whispers rather than yells.
91 points “King Valley fruit and the idiosyncratic choice of sylvaner as a lead player confers a cool aura of pine, white flower and green apple to this light-weighted, dry, texturally intriguing wine. A dash of gewurztraminer (10%) is responsible for the echo of spice and lychee lingering on the finish, more for lift than the role of supporting actor. Fermented wild in seasoned barriques, a gentle bite to the palate finds an easy riff with a drift of acidity. Real flow, here.”
- James Halliday (Australian Wine Companion)
The fruit was picked at around 11′ Baume and the whole bunches pressed on top of freshly pressed Gewurztraminer marc, direct to seasoned French barriques. The pressings juice was lightly fined and then racked off heavy solids. The cloudy free run juice spontaneously fermented and went sugar dry in 14 days, peaking at a temperature of 23’C. No malo-lactic fermentation and no lees stirring. Early bottling in August. Ideal aperitif wine.
Closure: Screw Cap
Bottle Size: 750ml
Drink Until: 2017
About the Producer
Thick as Thieves
Thick as Thieves is a one-man, Yarra based operation and that one-man is a guy named Syd.
After 10 years in winemaking, working for some of the Yarra’s top producers during that time, Syd’s oenological clock started ticking and he decided the time was right to make his own babies.
Not having to answer to bean counters and marketing departments, Thick as Thieves has the freedom to experiment with alternative varieties and styles which means Syd gets to make interesting wines that he loves to drink, not wines that simply sell or are in vogue.
The wine history of the King Valley is fascinating. What started as primarily tobacco farms run by Italian families transitioned to vineyards sporting Italian varieties. If you are hunting Sangiovese, Vermentino, Prosseco or aromatic whites like Riesling or Pinot Grigio, King Valley has a rich history with these varieties and, in many cases, multiple generations worth of history making and growing them. The intimate knowledge these winemakers have of their region and vines has seen the quality of King Valley wine improve year after year.
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