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03 Newsletter of the Murdoch Hill Wine Club

Newsletter N o 3

Hello, and welcome

to the autumn edition of “Out of the Shed” We hope you had a relaxing break over summer and that you found a place for Murdoch Hill at your table. We are getting closer to harvesting our Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay and as we have had such a cool summer harvest will be at least 2 – 3 weeks later than last year. The response to the new Sauvignon Blanc label

has been more than enthusiastic and we hope you enjoy the refreshed look. Some interesting articles for you in this issue we hope you enjoy. Cheers

Charlie & Julie Downer

Star Rating

Once again we have been awarded a five star wine rating in the 2011 Edition of James Halliday’s Australian Wine Companion

Our New Label We are thrilled with our new Sauvignon Blanc label. It has been 2 years in the design stage and it is exciting to see it on the bottle. The beautiful tree was Illustrated by well known artist Roger Roberts and he has captured all the life we find in the vineyard. There is a sulphur -crested cockatoo, a honey eater a galah a kookaburra and a possum. These are “our friends of the vineyard”. It is a colourful label and one we hope will stand out in the bottle shop and on the dining table.


Michael’s Italian Harvest - Vietti

Jock’s Round Up I have just returned from my annual beach holiday where I spent lots of time on the beach chasing birds and balls! Since my return I have noticed how the grapes have developed and just how green everything is, I have never seen it this green in February. I have a new friend on the farm, Rudi a Hungarian Wirehaired Vizsla which has been fun. We seem to have gathered some other friends on the property a koala, which is rare and a pelican has returned to the dam. I can’t wait for all the interesting things to happen at harvest, people and all types of machinery, it will be lots of fun.

Vietti hosted me for the 2010 harvest, which is a wonderful family run Cantina in the small village of Castiglione Falletto in the heart of Barolo. They produce some excellent wines, with some incredible Cru’s from all the villages of Barolo. The cellar is centuries old, functioning across four levels on the edge of the town, allowing gravity to do most of the work. Because of the very steep slopes in the vineyards everything is picked in 20kg crates, which made for a lot of manual labour. Not to worry because our appetites were taken care of, with loads of Italian food, cured meats and local cheeses that helped to

keep a few kilos on the waistline. The local grape varieties produced at Vietti included Dolcetto, Barbera and Nebbiolo. Nebbiolo is considered the king of wines, and produces some of the greatest wine’s in the world. Vietti makes some of the best Barbera in the region, with their Scarrone vigna vechhia been over 90 year old; this is a very serious wine with great balance and depth. Working for Vietti was a truly exceptional experience. To be given the opportunity to see and work with these great wines, from the vineyard to the cellar and to see how the flavours and tannins evolved was fantastic. Along with visiting other cellars and understanding the region of Barolo and Barbaresco was unbelievable.

Jock Above left: inside Vietti Winery. Above: Morning view across Piedmont.

Beef stew

with Barbera d’Alba Serves 4-6 1.5kg lean stewing beef cut into large cubes 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg 1/4 teaspoon thyme 2 bay leaves 1 clove garlic, sliced 2 cups Barbera 1/4 teaspoon salt Pinch black pepper 1 onion, diced 1 tablespoon butter 1/2 cup water

As winter seems to be upon us rather quickly. Here is an Italian Beef stew. Serve with Polenta or Mashed Potato for a heart warming dish. Combine all ingredients except onion, garlic, butter and water and marinate overnight. When ready to cook, brown the onion and garlic in a tablespoon of butter in a stewing pot. Add the marinated meat, setting aside the marinade, and left it brown slowly and thoroughly. Strain the marinade and add it to the stewing meat. Then add the water, cover and cook for about an hour or until the meat can be pierced easily with a fork. Serve with Polenta. Recipe from www.vietti.com


WINE REVIEW Chardonnay 2010 Vintage

The 2010 Chardonnay was made again in response to great reception of the new style found in 2009. The fruit for 2010 looked fantastic, with a long mild ripening period, which resulted in more focus in terms of fruit depth than the 09. After hand picking whole bunches were chilled and pressed and transferred to oak. Here wild fermentation went through like a dream, we reduced the malo to approximately 30% this year to retain acidity and primary fruit flavours. Continual stirring of the lees has given this wine a great texture and length, along with a structural finish from fine French Oak.

‘Cronberry’ SHIRAZ EXPOSED Shiraz from the Adelaide Hills has evolved tremendously over the past five years, with better site selection, vine material and greater maturity, Shiraz from the Hills is something to look out for. The diversity in soil types, aspects and climate within the Adelaide Hills is huge, which gives winemakers the opportunity to produce some exciting cool climate Shiraz. Our Shiraz vines will reach their 13th birthday this year! Over this time we have identified spots within the Shiraz blocks that produce some excellent fruit. We have some exposed metamorphic rock on the top section which has shallow soils and ripens slightly earlier this produces an excellent tannin structure. While further down the hill it becomes much more vigorous and requires more attention and with the crop levels kept down, it results in a more vibrant spicy style of Shiraz; together they produce a well-rounded wine.

The 2009 Shiraz was picked on the 7th April 2009. In the winery we encouraged whole berries in the ferment, which lasted approximately nine days and was left on skins for three weeks in total. This has resulted in a fine elegant fruit structure with powdery tannins on the finish. It matured in French oak with 30% new, for a period of 14 months giving the wine an aromatic lift and depth to the structure of the wine. The current 2009 Shiraz has fragrant spicy notes with berry fruits that open up to more gamey earthy aromas. This is a very savoury palate with good up front red fruits that meld into an earthy savoury mid palate that carries onto a grainy lingering tannin structure, where fine oak tannins carry this wine even further. This will pair well with most red meats, rich winter stews or risottos.

Cheers, Michael Downer

Chardonnay Party 2010 We had great fun at the shed party last April to launch our Chardonnay. I hope we were able to convert those who were ABC (anything but chardonnay) to ABC (always buy chardonnay)! We all seem to

appreciate this much more interesting style of Chardonnay. Sean from H.Q cuisine supplied us with some fabulous food and we are looking forward to seeing what he will come up with this year. Left: Sue McDougal & Denise LeMessurier Below: Michael Downer & Angas Buchanan


Special wine offer New Release Mixed Dozen For the first time we are excited to offer all wine club members a mixed dozen which showcases all Murdoch Hill new release wines. 4x 2010 Sauvignon Blanc 2x 2010 Chardonnay 3x 2009 “The Cronberry� Shiraz 3x 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Price $230 This is a limited offer so it is subject to availability Email: erinka@bigpond.com or call 08 8389 7081.

Murdoch Hill Wines, Mappinga Road Woodside, South Australia, 5244 www.murdochhill.com.au


Murdoch Hill Wines Newsletter No3