Thought it's been a rather stop-start beginning to Spring so far, the longer evenings and mild spells have had us dreaming about the hazy days of park picnics, garden parties, and the best wines to accompany them. Fortuitously, it's a quirk of the wine trade that the start of Spring also coincides with the arrival of the new vintage from much of the Southern Hemisphere, and this week we're pleased to bring you the latest releases from Gentle Folk, Kindeli, Radford Dale and Chasing Rabbits.
Gareth and Rainbo Belton of Gentle Folk are two of the pioneers on natural winemaking in Australia, creating fun but deceptively complex wines in Basket Range, Adelaide Hills. This is a region notable for progressive winemaking - Anton Van Klopper and Jauma are also based here - and each year the wines gain in character as both winemakers and vines get another vintage under their belt. Viticulture is organic with some biodynamic preparations and a low intervention approach in the cellar. We're stoke to have received the new vintages of Rainbow Juice and Vin de Sofa, just in time for the start of park and barbecue season.
Rainbow Juice: Quite a change up for 2021, this year's Rainbow Juice is mainly Pinot Gris and Gewürztraminer co-fermented on skins before blending with a little Syrah, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay. Exquisitely perfumed floral aromas with roaring acidity and sweet berry fruit from the Syrah.
Vin de Sofa: Whole bunch Sangiovese, Pinot Noir, Syrah and Merlot combine beautifully in this silky, spicy and generous raspberry fruit bomb with forest floor and violet nuances. Aged in a combination of old barriques and stainless steel, this is more fleshy than previous vintages and was absolutely electric with pizza in the garden last night.
Alex Craighead and Josefina Venturino of Kindeli Wines are based in the rolling hills of the Upper Moutere near Nelson at the top of New Zealand's South Island where the aim to create 'energetic, precise, and supremely drinkable' natural wines. They grow organically, hand harvest their grapes and ferment with native yeasts in a combination of amphora and stainless steel before bottling without added sulphur. We're always delighted to see what the new vintage from Kindeli has in store and judging by how well these have been selling already we're not the only ones!
Kindeli Blanco: A lovely skin contact blend of Riesling and Sauvignon Blanc. Herbal and floral with some gooseberry from the Sauvignon and hints of lime and kerosene from the Riesling. Well textured with great acidity and some gentle funk on the finish.
Kindeli Tinto: Lifted and aromatic blend of Pinot Noir, Syrah and Petit Verdot with cigar box spice, undergrowth and dark cherry aromas. Soft on the palate with more cherry, spice and a cranberry acidity giving lift.
Radford Dale & Chasing Rabbits
Radford Dale is a winery in Stellenbosch, South Africa working organically since 1998. In a region not short of sunshine, they pick early and extract gently to craft juicy wines with lively acidity and pillow-soft tannins.
Thirst Gamay: There are only 8 hectares of Gamay in the whole of South Africa so this is something of a rarity! From low-yielding 22 year old vines, the grapes undergo whole bunch carbonic maceration to create a crunchy red cherry, cranberry and tomato leaf scented red that provides ultimate Summer refreshment, especially after 20 minutes in the fridge.
Chasing Rabbits is a collaboration between star South African winemaker Corlea Fourie of Bosman Wines and UK importer Indigo working with organic Grenache and Grenache Blanc grown in decomposed shale in the Western Cape.
The Grenache Blanc is from bush vines grown at around 200m above sea level in Wellington. Despite the warm climate here, this is a vibrant rendition of this historic Rhone variety, with fleshy stone fruit, pithy grapefruit and chamomile notes wrapped up in a lightly waxy mouthfeel.
For the full range of new world wines available including Oregon whites from Ovum and Kelley Fox and the aforementioned Anton Van Klopper check out the collection here.