Ministry of Clouds Grenache Carignan 2020
Ministry of Clouds have long believed that blended wines are nourishing to the soul. Especially now as they remind us of our pre-Covid travels, as good for the mind as they are for the belly and always versatile with food. Here they pay a homage to the Spanish wines of Priorat, merging very old bush vine Grenache and spicy dry grown Carignan.
A wine based upon 80 year old bush vine Grenache planted into a northerly block atop the Onkaparinga Gorge which we blend with Carignan off our own adjacent estate. Both parcels were hand harvested, fermented in traditional open vats, and gently basket pressed. 85% whole-berries were retained to ensure a slow ferment, giving the wine a delicate lift, while the balance is fermented as whole-bunch for sappy structure. The team worked those ferments very gently to preserve freshness, but allowed long maceration to build necessary tannins and complexity. The parcels were matured in a mixture of inert tanks and old french oak puncheons for about 10 months to provide maturation but not oak flavour.
Fragrant Grenache fruit provides crunchy sour cherry and pomegranate lift, with a serious lick of dried herbs and amaro bitters from the Carignan. A balance between red scented perfume with a core of spicy raspberry, earth, and layered complexity buried within. The palate is long and lithe, with a depth of fruit intensity, filed nicely back by a line of sandy tannin.
Serve it coolish but not cold to preserve aromatics, this wine is perfect for warm sunny days cooking fish or meat over charcoal, with big generous salads and slab of manchego on the table... Eat with your hands, and do the dishes tomorrow!