Terre à Terre Sauvignon Blanc 2015
Our 100% barrel-fermented Sauvignon Blanc comes from our close spaced vineyard in Wrattonbully, South Australia. This vineyard has been baptised the Crayères Vineyard, after the chalk cellars that are found throughout Xaviers region of birth in Champagne, France. Similar natural structures are found underneath this very special vineyard, and they are now the subject of a research project led by a team from the University of Adelaide as they are full of undisturbed ancient fossilised remains.
The Crayères vineyard is located next to Tapanappas Whalebone Vineyard, at the top of a north-south limestone ridge in Wrattonbully, one of Australias most exciting regions. The Terra Rossa top-soil is characteristic of the area. This part of the vineyard was planted on rootstocks in 2008 using cuttings from the neighbouring Whalebone Vineyard and French clones and at a relatively high density for the area (4,444 vines per hectare, similar to the density of vineyards in Saint Emilion). The fruiting wire is only 50cm above ground, which is why the local vignerons call the vines the “low vines”.
The fruit for the Terre à Terre Sauvignon Blanc was hand harvested on the 18th of February 2015. It was harvested in smaller slotted bins and transported in refrigerated trucks to the winery in the Piccadilly Valley, which allowed us to chill and whole bunch press the fruit. After 15 days cold-settling in a stainless steel tank, the juice was fermented in ten 600L French oak demi-muids (20% new).
Post-fermentation, the wine was left on full lees for 9 months with lees stirring every other month. The wine did not go through malolactic fermentation to ensure that a crisp acidity balances the significant texture. It was bottled on the 7th of January 2016.
2015 was a great vintage, and the wine starts with very smooth and ripe citrus fruit and liquorish flavours, crisp acidity and finishes with a very good length. It is yet another big step up on the previous releases as the vines are now starting to show their potential to produce world-class fine wines of delicate texture, balanced acidity, flavours and alcohol and very good length and complexity. Just 1,300 cases of 6 were produced.