0800 280 2440
2012 Old Plains Longhop Cabernet Sauvignon, Mount Lofty Ranges
Old Plains is a joint venture formed by two high school friends whose paths re-crossed in the olive growing business, Tim Freeland and Domenic Torzi, the aim of the Old Plains wines is to preserve the heritage, character and quality of the few remaining parcels of old vines on the Adelaide Plains planted by Italian immigrants after World War II. In some cases all that has survived of a 30 acre plot after the 1980s vine pull is a couple of rows that, since 2002 have been coaxed back in to production to make these big, flavourful wines.
Further vineyard finds in the nearby Mount Lofty region have enabled the Longhop range to be created, the name a pun on the ubiquitous “critter” brands from Australia, and a cricketing term that will bemuse many.
The most famous red wine grape in the world and one of the most widely planted.
It is adaptable to a wide range of soils, although it performs particularly well on well-drained, low-fertile soils. It has small, dusty, black-blue berries with thick skins that produce deeply coloured, full-bodied wines with notable tannins. Its spiritual home is the Médoc and Graves regions of Bordeaux where it thrives on the well-drained gravel-rich soils producing tannic wines with piercing blackcurrant fruits that develop complex cedarwood and cigar box nuances when fully mature.
The grape is widely planted in California where Cabernet Sauvignon based wines are distinguished by their rich mixture of cassis, mint, eucalyptus and vanilla oak. It is planted across Australia and with particular success in Coonawarra where it is suited to the famed Terra Rossa soil. In Italy barrique aged Cabernet Sauvignon is a key component in Super Tuscans such as Tignanello and Sassicaia, either on its own or as part of a blend with Sangiovese.
Adelaide Hills, this up-and-coming South Australian region, may only be half an hour's drive from the city of Adelaide, spanning a 75km by 20km zone, but the change in topography is dramatic, the hot, dusty streets giving way to an elevated maze of verdant, twisting valleys of the Mount Lofty Ranges, offering varying aspects at between 350 and 700 metres.
Naturally, such a cool environment favours early ripening varietals such as Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Soils are predominantly low, fertile grey loam. The total area is approximately 500 hectares, with a disproportionate number of single wineries. However high land prices deter all but the die-hards.