2017 onyx durif

2017 Onyx Durif

Durif is a little known variety made famous by neighbouring Rutherglen, but planted throughout North East Victoria. Super late ripening its painfully tight bunches make it a difficult variety to grow. The resultant wines are structured, jet black in colour with a remarkable depth of flavour. They are a safe bet to reward with careful cellaring or as young wines a great match with red meat. Planted at our home vineyard in Eldorado from cuttings of the original Rutherglen clone taken from the Stanton & Killeen vineyard in Rutherglen. Our site in Eldorado is a cooler site for Durif, this allows us to make a more restrained rendition of this usually powerhouse variety.

The winery is a mere 100m from the vineyard allowing us to taste the grapes daily and pick at exactly the right moment when flavour and tannin were in balance. Upon arrival in the winery the fruit was destemmed but not crushed to maximise the presence of whole berries. 20% free run juice was run off, this gives the wine further concentration and intensity. We chase freshness and bright fruit never allowing the Durif to become overripe. The grapes were then split into 2 parcels both of which were cold soaked for 48 hours before inoculation with separate strains of cultured yeast. Ferments were kept cool and gently hand plunged once daily to limit extraction. Post fermentation the ferments spent 15 and 23 days on skins respectively before being gently basket pressed to a combination of new and seasoned French Oak Puncheons, approximately 20% new. 18 months in oak on full lees to build texture. Gently filtered then bottled June 2018.

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