Ladies & gentlemen,
Thank you for all the recent comments and expressions of interest over the new wines. We are pleased to announce that we will have them ready for release on the 2nd of July.
Before we get to the 2011 wines though, it seems appropriate to wrap up the 2012 vintage with a few thoughts. Well, in that regard, the quickest way to describe it was easier, less stressful and all in all better than 2011. That doesn’t mean the wines are necessarily superior, (though they will produce a style more inline with the Between Five Bells philosophy); it was just a more enjoyable process watching month after month of lovely, slightly warmer than average weather roll along the horizon.
Having this type of vintage also opens up the freedom of winemaking. In 2011, as you’ll learn, many of the varieties we set aside to make the Between Five Bells Red simply didn’t ripen to our liking, and mostly ended up in the Rosé, (the Sangiovese, Zinfandel, Mataro and others). In 2012, a smorgasbord of single variety ferments, co-ferments and whacky co-ferments were all bubbling along beautifully. All ripe and ready for the hands-off, very light extraction process we like to follow.
On the White front, we also stretched ourselves. Pinot Gris, Sauvignon Blanc and Riesling all went through extended skin contact in ferment and are now going through a slow malo in 1000L cuves. Very low yielding, old vine Semillon has produced a gorgeous, lemony single barrel, having been pressed off ealy and its skins added to a batch of Graciano. This White is still a while away from coming together, but should prove to be a powerful, fascinating drink.
The other addition we’re extremely proud off is a 2012 Between Five Bells Heathcote Red. One single puncheon of co-fermented Nero d’Avola, Negroamaro, Shiraz and Riesling (from the wonderful Chalmers Vineyard growers).
So, it’s happy days looking across the small holdings of our 2012 wines, with the only downside being that a small crop has all the volumes very low. We’ll leave them be for another month or two before checking on the White and putting together a tiny amount of Rosé for release next summer.
Before then, as mentioned, we will release the two 2011 wines. You’ll hear more about them towards the end of this month.
The Between Five Bells team.