Ricca Terra, The Colour Of Calmness, Riverland, South Australia, 2021
That the Riverland region of South Australia is now being re-imagined and reinterpreted is, in part, due to the efforts of one man.
As a viticulturist, Ashley Ratcliffe knew that not only were some of the best Riverland vineyards undervalued but that many were planted with the wrong varieties for the climate. Over the last few years, these vineyards have come on stream with varieties like Montepulciano, Touriga, Arinto, Fiano and Nero d’Avola to name but a few. Ashley's Ricca Terra range are vibrant, quirky, cleverly made wines that have deliciousness as their raison d’etre. More than that though, they are a beacon for the future sustainability of a previously much derided region and it is to Ashley’s credit that other serious producers are now taking fruit from here.
The common sense of growing grapes is to limit inputs (water and fertiliser), produce commercially viable yields and make high quality wine! Combing drought tolerant rootstocks with high vigour grape varieties should be the essence when growing grapes in one of the driest countries in the world! Such a combination forces viticulturists to reduce inputs to control excessive vine vegetative growth and hence grow quality grapes. The Negroamaro & Nero d'Avola were hand pruned and hand harvested.
Ten percent of this blend was fermented in old oak barrels to elevate the complexity of this wine.
No oak ageing
Light cherry in colour this reminds me of a refreshing cream soda, with a hint of campfire smoke and parsley leaf. Subtle on the palate, this is an elegant rosé.
Seafood and shellfish go beautifully, but this also makes a great quaffing wine.
Nero d'Avola 40%
12 x 75cl