Ballandean Estate is primed to release its single-vineyard Saperavi, a medium-weight rare and alternative red. This Strange Bird™ is even more unique as it is a vintage variance — hence the name Sinatlis, a lighter-style Saperavi. The 2017 vintage will be available for tasting at Ballandean Estate’s cellar door and for sale online for from Friday 22 November onwards, RRP $42.
From behind the iron curtain
Saperavi is a true globe trotter, originating in Soviet Georgia, where they have been making wine for more than 8000 years, and finding its way to Finger Lakes New York before migrating to Australia. Ballandean Estate recently participated in the inaugural Saperavi festival, where the handful of Saperavi producers In Australia gathered together for the first time. 2020 will see the Granite Belt host the Saperavi festival.
Sinatlis is a vintage variance that is pushing the boundaries
Estate founder Angelo Puglisi says that,
Our 2017 Saperavi vintage was a cloudy season, and this resulted in a vintage variance that we decided to make the most of.
Ballandean Estate‘s winemaker Dylan Ryhmer loves to push the boundaries. That year, the fruit was lighter in colour, so he decided to beef up the blend with 8% Durif to intensify the colour, delivering the depths that our Saperavi fans have become accustomed to.
The result was a softer, less viscous and deep ruby wine with a full body, savoury blue fruit, intense bouquet, dry palate and, smooth finish with lingering French oak.
But what to call it? Our granite soils reflect heat onto the fruit—speeding the ripening during the day, with cool temperatures overnight—resulting in mature, intensely-flavoured fruit.
We had to distinguish it from our sunny vintage Saperavi—hence Sinatlis, which is Georgian for “light”. Saperavi’s aromatics and firm texture complements game dishes and hearty winter fare. Try it with a duck ragu or fillet of venison with wild mushrooms.”Angelo Puglisi
Saperavi/Durif (8%) Blend, Alc/Vol 15.4%
Handpicked after careful monitoring in the vineyard to ensure the perfect balance between flavour, acidity and tannin ripeness. Long fermentation is followed by 14 months in reserve French oak barrels that are one to three years of age. Higher proportion of new oak in this wine due to big fruit structure and high alcohol. French oak soaks up tannin to build a big palate structure.
In our Bellevue vineyard, the Saperavi vines we planted in 2008 have an ancient look, with nobbly shoots reminiscent of arthritic fingers! Angelo was keen to experiment with this Strange Bird™ varietal, as its mid-season ripening makes it less risky than other reds. The granite soils reflect heat onto the fruit—speeding the ripening during the day, with cool temperatures overnight—resulting in mature, intensely-flavoured fruit.
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