The wish is to nurture the unique character of these extremely old (XOOO) Pedro Ximénèz vines, to capture them perfectly from barrel. The ‘Legacy of Australia’ is vigneron and lifelong champion of old vines and fortified wines, Carl Lindner. Carl and Zar have known each other since Zar was in diapers and that great connection was the catalyst for Dandelion Vineyards. Carl has some of the oldest and largest stocks of fortified wines in Australia and being able to produce a wine now from vines, many of which well over a hundred years old, and pulling from a well-aged solera is pretty astounding, especially given its price.
The Lindner family has been making this wine since 1944 from vineyards in Gomersal, just south of Seppeltsfield, planted 1904-1934. The gnarly, bush vines reach up from the earth as claws looking to grip the sky. The grapes are picked at optimum ripeness and left to dry in the sun. When the proper amount of evaporation+concentration has occurred, the grapes are pressed and fermented naturally in open-top wood fermenters. The resulting wine is very low in alcohol but extremely high in sugar and natural acidity and thus fortified with a neutral grape spirit. Each vintage the wine is produced and added to the solera, which now averages >35-years of age. Each year an amount equal to about 25% of the annual addition is pulled off in order to increase the stock of this wine, while ensuring the quality and age of the wine is maintained. The wine is hand blended and bottled without fining or filtration.