Brothers-in-law Daniel Chaffey-Hartwig and Theo Engela are the latest generation of the Chaffey family to ply their vinous trade in Australia. The original Chaffey brothers (Canadian hydro engineers) were true iconoclasts. They arrived in Australia in 1886 and proceeded (along with a number of their descendants) to make an indelible mark on the Australian wine landscape.
Their handmade minimal intervention wines come from individual parcels of low yielding vineyards, spread throughout the Barossa and Eden valleys. Drawing on true old vines and complex soils, they see themselves as part parfumier - discovering delicate aromatics; part historian - preserving the purity of pristine fruit; and part mad scientist - revelling in the lost art of small batch blending.
Old vines of Eden Valley Riesling and Barossa valley Grenache and Shiraz are their building blocks... Their pillars.
Three old vine Riesling vineyards feature here with two of them being dry grown. Vine age varies from 22 years to 60+ years. The vineyards are spread from the north (Moculta) to the central (Flaxman Valley) to the south (Springton) of the Eden Valley in order to incorporate all the key geological features of this long sub-region. Being dry grown and effectively Organically managed, there is great diversity in terms of both ripeness levels and sun exposure at the time of picking, leading to this wine's tell-tale complexity and wonderful pattern of ageing.
Hand-picking combined with a lengthy whole-bunch press cycle (9 hours) wherein gentle skin contact encourages phenolic body. Cold fermented on solids in a temperature controlled inox fermenter using a combination of indiginous and selected yeasts to develop and protect delicate aromas. The ferment is chilled prior to sugar dryness in order to maintain a small (4.4g/L) amount of residual grape sugar. As a stylistic choice, we do not use any fining throughout the winemaking process and only minimum SO2 is added prior to bottling.
A lively, pure Riesling with slatey, gunmetal-like characteristics combined with flavours of lemon sorbet and an assortment of floral notes.
The purity and acidity in this wine would pair well with salads including fresh fennel or raw courgette. Seafood stirfries would also be a perfect accompaniment.