Tuesday, November 12, 2013

2011 Yelland and Papps Devote Old Vine Grenache

It was 2009 when Red and I visited the Barossa Valley and did a tasting of Yelland and Papps wines in Susan and Michael Papp's dining room (prior to their cellar door opening). From those relatively early years for the winery to the present day, they have expanded their range considerably across three clear price points, all of comparatively high quality.
Despite there being several difficult vintages in the last 5 years, Yelland and Papps have managed to produce good to very good wines in small volume, regardless -or in spite- of vintage.

In contrast to the difficult, mostly heat affected Barossa vintages in recent memory (2003, 2007, 2008), 2011 wet, wet, wet – one of the wettest in decades.  As such, it presented winemakers with a range of different challenges. This has come out in the wines I have tried from this vintage across most regions in Australia. However, 2011 has also presented winemakers with the opportunity to make good wines of a different character to the standard, 'typical vintage' style.
With all of this in mind, I was interested to try one of Yelland and Papps' strongest wines - the Old Vine Grenache. This has been a consistently reliable wine over several years, and once again, it holds its head up in this tricky vintage, adding a stylistic twist.

Tasting Note:
Stalky, herbal nose pinot colour, initially some new leather and varnish, and with air, considerable white pepper.
On opening, medium bodied and savoury. Softening red cherry and raspberry fruit, mixed spice, pleasant herbaceous notes.
Lighter bodied and less intense fruit than in the past, not as primary or rounded, and more restrained with a sharper acidity that adds a bit of zing.  Spicy and peppery to the last.
Another good result from a difficult vintage for Yelland and Papps, and a definite ‘point of difference’ wine based on the several vintages of Devote Old Vine Grenache tasted previously.

ABV:  14.0%
RRP: $35
Score: 90pts

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