Pinot Meunier is not the first grape that comes to mind when thinking of the warm enclave of the Barossa Valley. Hell, a Belgian making wine in Australia isn’t commonplace either. These two oddities converged for a sub-10% alcohol liquid elixir that bursts with intense but quiet flavors. The source of this lovely wine is a small block of Meuneir amidst Shiraz and Grenache on the Lawley Farm in Krondorf. The vines were planted in 1988 and have been organically farmed since 2011. The term ‘old mate’ is a reference to Pinot Meunier being Koen’s favorite grape to work with, hence his best friend.
The bunches were handpicked at the end of February and brought back to the winery. Nearly two-thirds of the clusters were destemmed and placed in small tanks with the remaining bunches placed intact atop the destemmed portion for fermentation. Fermentation was carried out and finished without any additions. After the juice went dry in roughly 16 days it was pressed in old French barrique for maturation. It rested quietly for six months and then the wine was racked and bottled without fining or filtration. A small 14 ppm addition of sulfur was added at bottling.