Spinifex of the Barossa Valley is one of the most impressive 'new comers' of Australian wine. Established in 2001, Spinifex is still very much viewed as 'a new kid on the block' given the long history of many of its Barossa counterparts.
Spinifex is the project of New Zealand-born Peter Schell, a Roseworthy graduate who had spent several vintages working in the south of France prior to establishing Spinifex. Given his time working in southern France, a focus on Shiraz, Grenache, Mataro and Cinsault was hardly surprising.
65% Grenache, 10% Cinsault and 25% Mataro. In spite of the relentless proliferation of rosé on the market, Peter Schell's wine - now into its second decade of production - keeps coming up, well, roses. The fruit comes from a range of dry grown Barossa vineyards, “mainly bush vines, all hand-picked - old school,” chuckles Pete. In short, sites selected for their ability to produce outstanding quality rosé material (the average age of vines is 65 years old although the oldest parcels range up to 120 years of age). Grapes are hand-picked and crushed bunches were macerated for between 6 - 24 hours prior to pressing before the wine was fermented with indigenous yeasts and matured on lees prior to bottling. Approximately 5% was fermented and matured in old French oak demi-muids, the rest in tank. Bottled without filtration, the resulting wine offers the kind of vibrant perfume (of red fruit, nectarine and white flower), texture and crunchy line that were once the exclusive domain of Provençal rosé. The 2018 a fleshy delight buoyed by crunchy raciness and a thirst slaking finish - it proves yet again that the Barossa really is a great rosé (not to mention white wine) region in waiting.
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