Too often a mangled style, pinot gris is approached with grace and intelligence by Kate Lawrie. A pleasing whiff of honey over nectarine and pear leads you to a fruity palate showing the same notes, along with mandarin and sharp grapefruit. However, it’s all about the lush texture and full body, with a sexy roll in the hips and firm phenolic grip balanced by a clean seam of refreshing acid.
With mataro driving the bus, it’s the dark, spicy notes that sparkle, although terroir defines this blend. A sandy Vine Vale vineyard on the Barossa floor promotes bright juiciness in the berries that wrestle with gnarly old vine grunt in a lean and lively meld. It’s kept clean and delicious thanks to bright fruit acids.
The perfume is surprisingly lively – orchard blossoms with a whiff of fragrant plums – which leads to a warm embrace of Chinese five spice on a palate rich with black cherries. The flavours keep dropping through intriguing layers of dark fruit and mouth-coating tannins, amplifying a moreish, chewy texture.
Assertive fruit is bound tight and shows lots of promise, but with coarse edges at this stage – a consequence of 50 per cent being matured in American oak barrels. Fine black tannins are rigid but integrated into the body of the wine, but are so tightly wound that this must be viewed as a long-term futures investment.
Designed and structured like an elite machine that purrs and growls with equal measures of menace and purpose. It tastes like sumptuous, flowing red velvet from the mid palate through to the back, bound by expensive French oak, and the soft integration of tannins promote great length in the flavours. It’s delicious now, with a long distance yet to travel.
Exotically perfumed, with mace over roses among a rich melody of plums and blackberries, but the great appeal is its sensual, even flow across the mid palate, all velvety and lush, like molten chocolate. Soft yet opulent, finishing gently, with all the flavours intact. Immensely satisfying, it stands out as a distinctive cool climate shiraz with a mature personality.