Vintage 2012 was a fantastic year. The wines from 2012 are outstanding and up there with 2010 and a good vintage to have in the cellar. Vintage 2012 began with a good growing season of moderate rainfall and normal temperatures. Summer and Autumn were perfect with generally warm sunny days and only a few heat periods but nothing extreme. The weather was generally dry with an occasional shower of rain refreshing the vines and keeping things fresh. The perfect mid-high 20s weather ensured the grapes ripened steadily and evenly producing outstanding quality.
The Grenache comes from a 4-acre single vineyard block planted in the early 1900s. These vines are dry-grown, producing grapes of intense favour. The vineyard soil on the block is shallow sand over sandstone at the top end of the block, with sandy loamy soil over red clay at the bottom end of the block. Yields are about 1 to 1.5 tons to the acre. The Shiraz and Mourvedre blocks are similar in soil profiles to the Grenache block with the addition of quartz and iron stone. Each block has its unique features that result in additional layers of complex in the finished wine.
Following hand picking of the Grenache and Mourvedre on April 7th, grapes were de-stemmed into open-top fermenters. The must was warmly fermented using wild yeast hand plunging for the first 3 days and gentle hand pump-overs were carried out twice a day for flavour and colour extraction. After fermentation on skins for 10 days the must was traditionally pressed and then filled to barrel. The wine was matured in seasoned French oak hogsheads for 24 months prior to be blended with the Shiraz 13 weeks before bottling.
2012 1864 Greenock GSM is vibrate rich purple in colour. There are inviting and lifted aromatics of wild berries, rose perfume, marzipan, all-spice, raspberry, musk, liquorice and a touch of red cherry. The medium-bodied palate is filled with juicy berry fruits. Fresh and bright, fine textured tannins add backbone and structure to the wine. The hallmark of this well balanced wine is the purity of quality fruit, and gentle long maturation in seasoned barrels. Drinking well on release, this GSM is completed by a lengthy clean finish. This is a traditional wine, fruit-driven and delicate in acid that will allow the wine to develop further in bottle and enjoyed for many years.