2016 Fighting Gully Road Shiraz
Pure class from Beechworth. That's the MO here, with a red that is so spicy, so interesting and just plain delicious, helped along by the veteran Mark Walpole in the vineyard and youngish gun Adrian Rodda in the winery.
If you'd like to taste the future of Australian cool climate Shiraz, look no further.
No hesitation. This is a brilliant shiraz. Spicy, sweet and savoury at once and with gorgeous length. Anise, florals, peppers, black cherries and deli meat. The flavours have the ricochet of live music up close. Tannin is yet another asset. It will of course cellar but it’s already tip-top drinking.
The wines of Fighting Gully Road have always been good but in recent times they’ve taken significant steps forward by my reckoning. Exhibit A. This is a damn fine wine. It’s savoury, stringy and structured but it just provides so much pleasure. Anise and black cherries, white pepper and deli meat flavours are the guts of it, though florals are important here too. It’s a ripper. The price is exceptionally fair.
How's it taste?
Classical cool climate Shiraz, showing spice, white pepper and red berry fruits. A full, yet medium bodied palate with very fine grained tannins.
How was it made?
The red wines are made using minimal intervention, using indigenous yeasts and open fermentation. Our fourth Shiraz from the Fighting Gully Road site has a tannin structure that will ensure that it will with the help of screw cap closure age well for the next decade or more.
Who made it?
Fighting Gully Road is the passion project of Mark Walpole. After years working with Brown Brothers, in 1995 Mark found a block in neighbouring Beechworth, a region already known for producing premium boutique wines. The block was a mess and took him two years to clear before he could plant the vineyard. Mark was undeterred as the site was perfect, sitting at an optimum elevation of 550-575 meters on an escarpment that drops away by 200 - 300m. The elevation allows for a climate that is neither too hot nor too cold and the cooling winds keep the vines healthy, ensuring slow ripening during the day. At night, air drainage from the hillside provides milder conditions than the valleys below (similar to that found by the sea). This means that the climate of Beechworth is very similar to that in Bordeaux, resulting in elegant, structured and well-balanced wines.
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