Scratching a near ten year itch here.
Standing in the cellars of Chateau du Crouseilles in 2009, I’d just had my first encounter with the red wines of Madiran, produced mostly from Tannat. Floral, spicy, dark to the point of menacing; a layer cake of red berry fruits and mouth-coating tannin. I’d decided then and there that I’d make myself some Tannat one day, though I didn’t know anyone in Australia to be growing it at the time.
Thankfully Peter Read was a couple of decades ahead of me. His vineyard (now in the hands of the Evans family) at Myrrhee in the King Valley is planted to a quixotic mix of varieties, including a couple of rows of Tannat. It’s an immaculate vineyard. Sub-alpine, rolling green hills, a little wild and isolated…just like Madiran if you squint a bit.
Anyhow, that’s quite an intro for one barrel of wine. Yep. Just one.
Lifted red berry fruits, pepperberry, clove and cocoa spice (remember chico babies?). Fresh and vibrant, with characteristic tannic grip and an autumnal/herbal edge. Leave some be for a few years if you can, it has all of the ingredients to do well in the cellar.
King Valley (Myrrhee)
38 dozen made
$29/bottle – BUY