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2019 Tempranillo


Rioja, Spain 


Vibrant and youthful in appearance. Sweet aromas of boysenberry and red liquorice leap from the glass before a sweetly fruited palate. Blood orange and cherries spiced with caraway seed. Soft and round but structured with tangy acidity and a gentle grip. Delicious drinking now.

It was with good foresight and fortune that Leon Tokar decided to plant Tempranillo, a little known Spanish variety in 1999. We now have the some of the oldest Tempranillo in the Yarra Valley, planted directly outside the Tokar Estate restaurant. Spur pruned to a VSP trellis. The leaves are enormous on the vine so a couple of leaf removals are performed through the growing season to encourage sunlight on to the bunches to enhance the colour and structure of the wine. The vines are low yielding, generally delivering 1.5 – 2 tonnes per acre.

The Tempranillo was harvested in late February with bright berry flavours and ripe tannins. The grapes were fermented as three small ferments, all with wild yeasts followed by a long soaking on skins for up to 35 days to gently extract tannin. Once pressed, the wine was transferred to French oak barrels (mostly 500L puncheons) for wild malolactic fermentation and ten months maturation in our cellar. The wine was bottled whilst still bright and fresh. 


90 Points Halliday Wine Companion 

While it is full of the variety's determined tannins, there's also a juiciness and vibrancy to the sweet fruit ere. Spiced cherries, a dash of cola and licorice root are the mainstay of flavours, yet there's a pleasing savoury coating. Jane Faulkner 2021.

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