Mataro’s Time to Shine
After 44 Barossa vintages (the 45th about to begin), John (with a little pushing from Tim) has finally decided to release a 100% Mataro. Think about that for a minute… that’s a lot of experience tasting amazing old vine Mataro, assessing quality and style before taking the plunge with a straight release.
What changed? Well, in 2016 we were very fortunate to receive some perfectly timed rains in late January / early February. These rains helped to break up quite a hot start to 2016, slow down ripening and allow for more flavour development.
The rains were a godsend for the amazing 115 year old, dry grown Mataro bush vines we have the privilege of utilising. The vines were in fantastic condition leading up to harvest and fortunately yielded enough fruit with great concentration and structure to bottle the inaugural Annexus Mataro.
Our very first 100% varietal Mataro. Old vines. Tiny production.
A Special Place
The vineyard in question is a single site located in the Barossa Valley parish of Light Pass. This is an area in the Northern end of the Valley, a few kilometres out of Nuriootpa. The old, gnarly bush vines do it tough, growing on very sandy soils without any irrigation.
The vineyard is steeped in history, with John first dealing with the original owners, the Scholz family, in his Penfolds years. Undoubtedly the site contributed to some pretty special fortified wines over the years, and it is with a sense of pride that we are now able to finally recognise the history and pedigree of the site with its own bottling.
Grower Mike Scholz delivering hand picked Mataro to a happy winemaker, John.
Pre-Release – 2016 Annexus Mataro
Before we officially release the Mataro to our distributors, we’d like to offer our loyal mailing list customers the first opportunity to snap some up! Similarly to our Annexus Grenache, quantities are very limited – we’ve only made a total of 250 cases all up – fruit of this calibre from 115 year old vineyards is hard to come by….
2016 was an excellent year for Mataro. It is an richly layered, spicy, complex expression of old vines. Vibrant, bright purple in colour it has amazing concentration of flavour without being overtly heavy. The 2016 is quite seductive on release with its array of rich dark fruit and lifted spices. It has all the right ingredients, in particular wave after wave of mouth coating tannins, to age gracefully for many years to come.
New Release – 2015 Eligo Shiraz
We’ve also extended member pricing to our other wines during this time, including the brand new release of our flagship Shiraz, Eligo. The 2014 Eligo sold out in quick time after receiving some lovely reviews (including 97pts from James Halliday). The 2015 Eligo is a very worthy follow on, destined to become a classic. It is perhaps more seriously structured than the 2014, and has amazing layers of silky dark fruits and a long generous palate.
Amazing colour in the old vine Mataro ferment, mid pump-over
As this update goes to press we have just kicked off the 2018 vintage with some Marsanne from Stonewell (a little area just out of Tanunda before Marananga). This Marsanne is destined to become a component of the 2018 Plexus White.
The next few weeks will be a critical stage of ripening for most of our Barossa Valley Shiraz. We’ll be spending a lot of time out walking vineyard rows, tasting berries and chewing skins in order to try and catch the grapes at optimum sugar and flavour ripeness.
Looking west from Les Fenson’s Marananga Shiraz vineyard, likely to be our first Shiraz pick. Here’s hoping for more days like this for the rest of vintage