|Wine||Kay Brothers “Griffon’s Key”|
|Maturation||10 Months in Aged French Oak|
Good evening wine lovers!
It’s good to be back behind the glass, and this evening is no exemption as I delve into a particularly special wine from the fine folk at Kay Brothers Wines in McLaren Vale. In my hands, I have a special little Grenache. Not much of the stuff was made. Only 3,180 bottles of Griffon’s Key were produced from what was considered a brilliant 2016 Vintage for Grenache.
James Halliday, who is the Australian equivalent of Robert Parker, held a recent Australian Grenache challenge which this wine won. Not only did it win the best Grenache in Australia recently; it also took out best wine in McLaren Vale. Therefore, what I have in the glass is something a little extra special and now much sort after for any wine collector.
Let’s move on to the actual wine though.
Colour: Ruby red with a soft violet hue.
Aroma: Fascinating and equitably Grenache through-and-through. Famous UK wine Author, Oz Clarke referred to Grenache as the Sex of wine. This is no exception. Alluring floral characters are combined with the likes of sour/red cherry and sweet boysenberry rounded out beautifully that you want to return to the glass for more to seduce your nostrils amongst the perfume of this wine again and again.
Palate: Medium bodied. Just like the aroma, this wine is rich in flavour. However, tame in tannin. It combines in beautifully, giving off quite sweet boysenberry and dark cherry flavour, bullied ever-so-slightly by acid that keeps this wine well under control. Never-the-less, this wine, for a Grenache is bold and powerful and finishes with exceptional length. I have consumed many Grenache wines, but I feel this one just seems to be ramped up to 11 on the volume gauge. This wine reminds me of the Australian Christmas when you get the red cherry’s that over the January period start to darken and take on more sweeter flavours. From Nose to palate, this is what this wine does. There are not too many Grenache wines I have tried that stand up to this one, but of recent times it’s starting to become a little more common.
I am amazed by this wine. Honestly, I feel that the resurgence of Grenache is beginning again in McLaren Vale. When I first got into wine, trying to get a Grenache was hard to find. Many were getting blended in the Rhone Style GSM’s or used to make Rosè. Lately though, only in the last couple of years, Grenache is making a comeback. I for one am glad. I feel here in Australia, we got caught up in the bold and powerful Shiraz and Cabernet Grapes, that it almost destroyed the traditional Claret. Yet, 45 years on, now it is good to be an Australian wine consumer. Many varieties are making a resurgence, and we as wine consumers are more open to new and unknown varieties here in our country which the modern-day wine drinker is very open to engaging a plethora of different varietals. Grenache hails back to an era long gone, but those vines that survived being uprooted to make way for the full-bodied varietals have proved that Grenache is still alive and well today, and us consumers are starting to fall in love with this grape once again. With a wine like this, I think many will find it hard to turn their heads to a Grenache in the very near future. McLaren Vale is leading the way.
Drink: Now to 2027
The SA Wine Guy