2017 Graciano

Bright, fresh, aromatic and spicy, this has all the distinctiveness that has made Graciano a favourite from our vineyard. Medium bodied, peppery and floral, this is a complete and lovely drink.

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Light-ish but tasty and characterful. Frisky, you’d call it. Nuts, herbs, berries and licorice, tobacco too maybe. It jaunts along in fine-but-energetic style. A good lick of tannin doesn’t hurt matters at all. It’s a savoury red but mores it’s a crisp one. Herbs herbs herbs, in a good way. Drink it young. 91 Points (Campbell Mattinson)

Originating from Spain this mid-weight red variety has found a happy home in the ACT region. The nose is brambly and exotic, dusty plum, white pepper and black cherry, with a whisper of spicy oak in support. In the mouth this is a juicy mix of red and black berry fruits and fine tannin, it carries plenty of flavour but remains light on its feet thanks to lovely fresh line of acidity. 95 points (Rob Geddes MW)

Frank van de Loo planted the Spanish varieties tempranillo and graciano at Mount Majura earlier this century. Tempranillo became the vineyard’s signature red while the smaller production graciano graces blends as well filling its own special niche. As a very late ripener it’s at risk of not maturing in the Canberra climate. However, the balmy 2017 autumn ripened the variety in late April. The resulting medium bodied wine captures graciano’s floral aroma, soft tannins and plush, pepper-tinged vibrant fruit flavour. It’s another red of great individuality. (Chris Shanahan)

Winemaker's Notes

There is some similarity in climate between Canberra and leading Spanish wine regions, which led us to plant Tempranillo and then Graciano. Graciano is a minor variety in Spain, considered to be of very high quality and used in blends for its good acidity. In our vineyard it is fastidious with regards micronutrients, and needs a lot of crop thinning. It is very late ripening and a good example of the concept that the most distinctive wines are made on the margin of ripeness.

The 2016-2017 growing season started with a wet winter and cool spring, resulting in later growth but strong canopies from all the moisture. The summer was particularly hot, with consistently high temperatures from late December to late February, but then switched into a perfect, mild autumn with sunny days, cool nights and little rain. Crops were larger than expected, accordingly taking longer to ripen, but having perfect conditions to do it in. In contrast to some recent years, ripening of different varieties was well spread apart, so that vintage was measured and controlled (leisurely would be going too far!). There are bright fresh flavours in the earlier varieties, with increasing depth, colour and detail in those ripening later.

Hand picked 24 April 2017, and wild-fermented separately in open vats with hand plunging. Matured in older French oak, blended, lightly filtered, and bottled under screwcap November 2017; 120 dozen made. Alcohol 13.5% by volume. Vegan friendly?: No (fined with gelatin).

Drink now to 2027.

In The Cellar

In Spain, graciano has a reputation for adding longevity to the blend, but we are only just getting a glimpse of how our wine ages. Wines were tasted from the winery museum. If your cellaring conditions are less than ideal, consider reducing the expected life of the wine. Tasted May 2014.

Vintage Tasting Notes Drink Until Rating
2011 Bright ruby with purple edge. White pepper, dried herbs, vibrant and fresh. The palate is quite light and racy, with slightly green tannins. 2019 Good
2010 Bright red with a purple edge. Ripe dark fruit with meaty, earthy notes. Spicy sweet red fruit on the palate with baking spice, redskin and dark liquorice. Complete, balanced and lovely. 2024 Outstanding
2009 Quite a deep purply-red. Ripe dark fruit aroma, the palate has plenty of vibrant pretty red fruit and a little less pepper and spice. The fruit is fleshy on the palate, but the bones are firm too. A delicious wine with plenty of future. 2023 Excellent
2008 Bright ruby red. Soft sweet fruit to smell, fresh and aromatic, lovely red fruits with less herb and pepper than most years. The palate is still quite tight, fresh and almost zippy. 2021 Very good
2007 Light ruby red. A little earthy and gamey, the red fruits come through on the palate, with some tannin firmness. Good tension between acid and tannin on the palate. 2016 Good
2006 Vibrant red colour. Fresh red fruits nose, lovely sapidity, with some pepper and dried herbs. Quite complex and very attractive. Light-medium bodied, very fine suede-like tannins from carry all the way through, very poised and balanced. Just showing some delicious development, will hold for quite a while. 2020 Outstanding