Single Vineyard Iluma Syrah 2013 750mL
Abundant aromas of cassis, violets, allspice and musky rose amid Ngeringa Syrah’s classic blueberry characteristic. Medium bodied but full flavoured. Velvety tannins. Fabulous length.
On the northern slope of the Mount Barker Summit, at an altitude of 420m, is the Iluma Vineyard, home of Ngeringa’s “most inspiring and exciting fruit”. The majority of Ngeringa Syrah and Viognier is planted in the Iluma vineyard, facing west on lean, textured soil of micaceous schist and ironstone over clay. The Iluma vineyard is also long certified biodynamic with no chemical sprays applied.
20% whole-bunch pressed and 18 months ‘élevage’ in French Oak barriques and puncheons with one racking after the first year. Approximately 40% new French oak used.
Wild fermentation, no enzymes, oxidative handling pre-fermentation, spontaneous malolactic fermentation, gentle extraction, warmer fermentation, minimal temperature control. No fining. Estate bottled. Small amounts of Sulphites added before bottling.
Across Australia, the 2013 growing season was characterised by record-breaking heat and infrequent, scant rainfalls. Indeed, in the Eastern States – and even closer to home – many vineyards began irrigating in the late winter in anticipation of a devastatingly dry spring to come. In years such as this the Adelaide Hills’ typically higher precipitation and lower temperature stand us in good stead. Our minimally irrigated vines – with strong, healthy roots deeply embedded in the cooling soil – steadfastly withstood the drier weather and benefitted from the cooler nights. On the positive side, as well, there was essentially no disease pressure throughout the Hills leaving us and our vines only the vagaries of the climate to contend with. Good warmth toward the end of February and during harvest ensured excellent ripening in the final few weeks of the season. The upshot was a vintage with good yields, similar to our 2010 crop levels although without the same evenness. Vigilance was required during this condensed, four-week harvest to ensure that fruit was picked at optimum maturity from the different parts of the vineyards. Wines from this vintage tend to be tight and focused.