The Barossa isn’t exactly known for bright, airy, ‘crunchy’ reds, but Steve Crawford is looking to rewrite that narrative. This vintage primarily hails from two certified biodyanmic vineyards: ‘Ahrens Vineyard’ in sandy Vine Vale, a bit of old vine Grenache from ‘Stockwell Vineyard’ in Light Pass and the ‘Hoffman Vineyard’ in Ebenezer and a touch of Mourvèdre from latter. The 2019/20 growing season was a vintage of two parts. Act one was a very dry winter that continued into flowering in November, then came the heat and it really didn’t let up through the summer. When ripening season set in the weather turned autumn like with moderate days and cool nights coming from nowhere. This was vital and really preserved freshness, acidity and great tannins.
The fruit was all hand-picked and primarily destemmed (about a quarter of the Grenache was fermented whole-cluster). The wine fermented separately in open-top fermenters without any additions and once dry was gently pressed, with only the free run juice, being sent to a mixture of 228L and 500L French barrels. The wine aged for only 10-12 weeks, depending on the barrel where the blends are then determined. It is then racked to tank and bottled without fining or filtration and just a small addition of sulfur.