Little Dam 2015
Little Dam 2015
The Little Dam block is one of our hardest, where the red soil is rocky and so rich in iron the pebbles are magnetic. Always the most concentrated Tempranillo parcel, the 2015 has savouriness and deep cherry fruit.
Little Dam (0.521Ha) was originally planted to pinot noir in 2000 and grafted to tempranillo clone D8V12 in 2004. Little Dam is 55 metres away to the south from the original Rock block, with similar aspect and elevation (669-680m). The soil is also similar, with another reef of rhyolite running through it and again mixed with limestone, but a little shallower and rockier, with less or no A horizon covering the red soil. The rhyolite here is particularly rich in the iron mineral magnetite-some small pebbles will stick to a magnet. Typically this block is the most structured of the three, with a 'dry-packed' tannin character we associate with the best examples of the variety. After not needing any irrigation in the wet 2011 and 2012 seasons, this block has been dry-grown since, and shows great depth and concentration.
Mount Majura makes a specialty of Canberra region tempranillo. This stylish example smells of cherry liqueur chocolates, savoury spice and vanilla, followed by ripe flavour, succulent balance and a soft finish. Score 92 (Ralph Kyte-Powell).
Deep, dark colour and a slightly tarry, almost inky, super-ripe fruit aroma. The wine is intense and full-bodied, with lively acidity and good freshness, the tannins tight, firm and balanced. The backbone is very firm and is stiffened by the acidity. It would reward cellaring. 91/100 (Huon Hooke).
This is my pick of three single-block bottlings from Mount Majura's nine-hectare tempranillo vineyard: it's the one that, for me, shows the most varietal character - ample fleshy black cherry fruit, tongue-hugging supply tannin, some floral lift. (Max Allen).