Thistledown The Vagabond Grenache 2021
This wine possesses a beautifully complex, aromatic nose of violets, wild cherry, rosemary and warming spice. The palate is energetic yet polished and smooth with vibrant cherry, spice, wild strawberry and liquorice on the palate. Medium bodied but multi-layered and textural with a very long, aromatic finish.
95+ points – The Wine Advocate
95 points – The Wine Front
95 points – The Real Review
95 points – James Halliday
We’re convinced that, of all the regions of Australia, the greatest potential for Grenache greatness is in the McLaren Vale. We therefore set about finding unique plots throughout the region, looking for specific soil formations that would embue the Vagabond with finesse, varietal purity and texture.
Rare is the vintage that combines good yields and high quality but 2021 was just that. A remarkable vintage in that it was once again pandemic affected but that it was measured and mild with none of the heat spikes or drought conditions of recent years. With good levels of winter rains filling soil profiles, the mild weather with intermittent rains throughout the growing and ripening season ensured that fruit ripened over a long period of time and the vintage was one of the longest in recent history. The results are spectacular, healthy fruit, moderate sugars and complex flavours, have resulted in wines of beautiful balance, fragrance and varietal typicity.
From 4 separate, old, dry grown, bush trained vineyards in Blewitt Spring, planted in deep sands with some ironstone. All the fruit was hand picked with each vineyard vinified separately. One vineyard was wild fermented in a concrete pyramid which had layers of whole bunch and crushed fruit. This ferment had no mechanical extraction. The balance was wild fermented in an open fermenter with 35% whole bunches, hand plunged twice daily. This portion was aged in puncheons while the pyramid fermented was pressed back to a concrete egg and oak puncheons for maturation.