The Henschke family have been making wine at their estate in the Eden Valley since 1868. Fifth-generation winemaker Stephen Henschke took over running the winery in 1979. Together with his viticulturist wife Prue, they have taken their two single vineyards, Hill of Grace and Mount Edelstone, and transformed them into two of Australia’s most sought-after wines. Through a combination of great viticulture from Prue, who is at the forefront of re-introducing native plants into their vineyards to improve biodiversity, and winemaking from Stephen, they have built upon their inheritance and turned this traditional producer into one that is recognised by savvy wine drinkers throughout the world.
Stephen and Prue Henschke realised the exciting potential of the higher altitude Adelaide Hills region in 1981, and purchased a 13 hectare site in Lenswood at 550 metres above sea level, covered in orchards, with beautiful steep slopes and stunning views towards the Eden Valley. Well-drained sandy loam over medium clay is interspersed with shale fragments overlaying a shale bedrock. Various clones of many varieties were planted between 1982 and 1987, including Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Sauvignon. The pinot noir vineyard has been named after Charles Giles, an early pioneer whose descendants had managed the property as an apple orchard since 1864. This single vineyard wine has become more intense and complex as the vines have reached maturity and are producing fruit of outstanding quality. Yields are low, on average six tonnes per hectare.
After a typical wet and cold winter, spring brought particularly mild and unstable weather to Lenswood with fog, rain and some hail storms, fortunately with no resulting damage. A long, dry and mild spell from Christmas to Easter provided ideal ripening conditions, allowing tannins to mature and depth of flavour to develop. Fruit quality across the board was outstanding and 2018 was a fantastic year for Lenswood, which produced grapes with high natural acidity and excellent varietal character.
Pinot Noir grapes were hand harvested in the cool of the morning and individual blocks of the single vineyard were divided up into separate parcels with top, middle and bottom of the slope picked separately. Each parcel remained separate throughout the vinification process until the final assemblage was made. Once in the winery, the best grapes were selected using a sorting table followed by selective technology, before being destemmed and lightly crushed into small, stainless steel, open-top fermenters, over the top of approximately 15% whole bunches. Several parcels were allowed to spontaneously undergo wild yeast fermentation. The fermentations were controlled with a combination of punchdowns and pump-overs being performed twice to three times daily. After approximately 7-10 days the fermentations reached dryness, and were left on their skins for another 10-14 days before being gently pressed to French oak barriques (8% new and 92% seasoned). The wine matured for 10 months in oak before assemblage and bottling.
Bright crimson in colour with ruby hues. The nose is very expressive with aromas of ripe forest berries, raspberry, cherry, rhubarb and strawberry along with hints of lavender and subtle oak nuances. Silky tannins provide structure on the palate and a mouthwatering acidity carries the precise flavours on to the lingering finish.
|Grape Varieties||100% Pinot Noir
|Notes||Sustainable, Vegan, Vegetarian, Practising Biodynamic|