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Saturday 2 April 2011

Deisen Grenache 2005

Halliday's not a fan.  I can see why, but wine is more than what is purely just in the glass.  It's about stories, memories, set and setting - terroir of the mind or some such.  And for these reasons, I am.

Deisen wines were first brought to my attention as one part of a fantastic dinner with some dear friends at Appelation in the Barossa valley in 2009.  Beautiful labels too are also a draw, and stories abound with regard to vignerons Sabine Deisen and partner Les.  Stories of the Deisen fruit going into Rockford's basket press and also to John Duval; of old vines being pulled up as part of the vine pull and Robert O'Callaghan not getting to Sabine in time to prevent this, for he knew of the quality of the fruit; of re-planting vines at Rocky's encouragement, asking Wayne Dutschke to make the wines for her, for him to encourage and mentor her through learning to do it herself (thanks Campbell Mattinson for that last one).

It's not just a liquid in a glass, but ultimately that's what the Punter is buying.  So, at 6 years old this one is showing secondary development, the brackish hue around the edge, moving away from the gloss of youth.

Aromas of dusty earth, dried herb; gone is the primary fruit of youth.  The palate shows an unexpected lightness, there's a faint touch of red berry flavours - raspberry - and some cola cube, but it is the wine's smoothness that draws you in only to be somewhat overshadowed by the alcohol and spice on the finished.

It's not particularly balanced, not or is it over bearing (if you're used to such things).  I like to think that it is a product of its place: a sponge that soaked up that Barossan sun and placed it into the grapes from which this came.

Source: Retail, Grand Central Cellars
Price: $37 (RRP when released)
Alcohol: 15.5%
Closure: Cork


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