This ‘yetti-like’ (in that it is rarely seen) Spanish variety in Australia (or anywhere for that matter) takes on an entirely different life in the hands of Dave and Koen. It is dazzling and bewildering yet familiar notes are aplenty…when nailed properly as it was originally planted as a distillation grape so it is large and rather baseline in notes. The gnarly old vines come from a small vineyard in Williamstown in the southern Barossa on gravelly sand. In order to put the ‘El’ in ‘El Doradillo’ the amigos decided to do some serious skin contact experiments creating a textural nirvana of sorts. The block (a few rows) is a real head scratcher according to Dave. One day it is a physically hard and innocuous grape and the following day they are large nuggets of sweetness and ample texture.
The boys picked the fruit when the acid is about to entirely disappear and then really make a mess of things. Roughly half of the lot is 1.75 tons of destemmed fruit atop 1.33 tons of whole-clusters. The next portion was a ton of destemmed fruit atop a bed of a half-ton of whole-clusters. The final component is 1.33 tons of pure whole-cluster goodness. All of the lots are fermented without any additions in open-top fermenters on their skins, being hand/body plunged a few times a day for two weeks. The wine is then stirred-up 2-3 times a day for one month. The wine was then pressed from the skins and the lots were combined in stainless-steel for three months of aging. It was bottled without fining, filtration or any sulfur.