98 Points & Special Value Wine James Halliday
To create our contemporary Coonawarra wines, we’ve returned to traditional methods of viticulture. We’ve become down to earth (again), hands on and nurturing. It’s a gradual process, one that takes passion, commitment and a lot of hard work.
The mark of a good vineyard is its balance – the consistency of the fruit, ripening at the same time. To make this happen, we’ve taken a more natural, holistic approach to vine, incorporating a range of techniques and processes. For a start, we are returning to hand pruning. While we still use machinery in some of our vineyards, the precision of hand pruning makes a difference to the consistency of the yield and the fruit. Eventually, all our vineyards will be pruned by hand.
We have new irrigation and frost protection programmes in place (pretty essential in the frosty Coonawarra) as well as soil cultivation and moisture retention initiatives, because it’s all about the soil and how balanced and nutrient rich it is – we have a programme in place for that too. The worms are loving us at the moment (and so are the good bacteria) – our new viticulture culture is working. In many ways, Penley has gone back in time to create a new future, one that is reinvigorated from the soil to the fruit to the glass. – Source Winery
“The packing (high-shouldered brown glass bottle) with the far extreme of minimalist labelling (the statutory requirements of vintage and alcohol on a detachable neck label) is doubtless calculated to attract discussion. So should the ravishing cabernet made by Yarra Valley winemaker Kate Goodman. It’s only medium-bodied, but its intensity is of a scale seldom encountered. The cassis fruit is the ruby set in a necklace of bay leaf and superbly honed tannins. A vineyard bursting into song after 30 years of silence.” – 98 Points & Special Value Wine James Halliday