Thistledown, Thorny Devil Grenache, McLaren Vale, South Australia, Australia, 2022
Masters of Wine, Giles Cooke & Fergal Tynan, founded Thistledown Wines in 2010 after discovering iconic vineyard sites in the McLaren Vale, Barossa Valley and Adelaide Hills.
They make hand-made, small batch wines that perfectly illustrate the benefits of great sites and intelligent, minimalist winemaking.
In 2014, the vineyard the fruit came from performed out of its skin and it was while in the vineyard that they came across a little lizardy fellow called a Thorny Devil. They liked the name and the fruit produced beautiful wine and so decided that it was high enough quality to be bottled on its own. Thorny Devil comes from a variety of sites, all of which have in common that that they are old, bush trained and dry grown. With Grenache, they are always looking to maximise fruit purity, texture and finesse and do so through earlier picking, selection of blocks within the vineyard and a detailed understanding of each site and how it reacts to the season.
The fruit was handpicked from a variety of sites, all of which were vinified separately with up to 30% whole bunches retained in the ferment. Fermentation began naturally and hand plunging twice a day was carried out through to dryness. Gently pressed off skins before 10 months in old oak hogsheads.
Type: Old oak hogsheads
% wine oaked: 100
% new oak: 10
The wine has the characteristic McLaren Vale perfume and spice with a beguiling texture and perfume that unfolds, layer by layer. This delicately hued red is otherwise very elegant with vibrant wild strawberry, spice and silky texture.
A beautiful match for game meats, North African lamb and charcuterie.
6 x 75cl
Award: James Halliday Wine Companion 95 Points
Award: Robert Parkers The Wine Advocate 93 Points
Award: James Halliday 93 Points
Award: Huon Hooke 96 Points
Award: James Halliday 96 Points
Award: Global Fine Wine Challenge 2021
Award: Robert Parkers The Wine Advocate 95 Points