Harvest Date 23rd February 2018 | Alcohol 14.3% | Standard Drinks 8.5
Marc Scalzo and Jonathon Thompson
Viognier 3% was added prior to fermentation to add complexity and provide some delicate floral notes whilst deepening the colour. Grapes were slowly fermented to dry over 3 weeks and softly pressed off skins, wine was then put through malolactic fermentation. Matured in 30% new, 70% 2yr-5yr old French oak for 20 months prior to blending and bottling.
The Shiraz was the second variety planted at Mt Pilot Estate in 1995. It was planted on two root stocks Paulsen and Ruggeri. The rootstock, whilst selected for Phyloxera control, saved this part of the vineyard during drought of 2005 – 2009. The Shiraz clone is believed to be from an 1880 clone that is known as a perennial high quality grape with low yields. The Shiraz has been able to survive for 5 years without irrigation in some of the hottest summers on record. The vines in 2016 cropped at ~3000kg /ha and are spur pruned, with the west side of the canopy left to sprawl and give protection from the afternoon sun and the east side lifted with wires to let the morning sun in.
The 2018 growing season started well with reasonable soil moisture and a warmish start to bud burst and then a warmish (3 days over 38C) with early rain and some supplementary irrigation The vineyard looked a little restrained but later rains helped with canopy development. The ripening period was characterised by a slow even ripening with some warmer weather towards the end of Vintage. Some irrigation was undertaken during the vintage and vines remained healthy and disease free.