Warner Vineyard is so-called because it belongs to Rick Kintzbrunner’s business partner, Graham Warner. Fruit from this plot is co-fermented with a tiny percentage of Roussanne to impart a little floral lift to the wine. At 500 metres of altitude this is a decidedly cool location by Australian standards and in style the wine leans more towards Cote Rotie than to the Barossa Valley.
Aromas of black olive, violets, blackberries and black pepper suggest a Northern Rhone origin, and the wine also has the supreme elegance of the finest examples from that prestigious appellation. Rick Kintzbrunner unashamedly admits that he is seeking to make a wine of structure with fine tannins, acidity and subtlety rather than one dominated by sweet fruit.
(Alun Griffiths MW, BBR Wine Director)Giaconda Vineyard
From fruit sourced from their partner Graham Warner’s vineyard about 3.5 kilometers down the road, the 2008 Warner Vineyard Shiraz is co-fermented with about 1.5% Roussanne. The grapes get a bit of a cold soak before the fermentation begins naturally with a 3-4 week maceration period on skins. “We’re aiming to make wines with tannins and backbone without overly sweet fruit,” Rick explained as we tasted. Deep garnet-purple in color, this wine has intense aromas of crushed blackberries, violets, red roses, red licorice, black pepper, some game / hung meat, allspice and mocha. With medium-high acid and a high level of very fine tannins, this concentrated yet elegant, medium to full-bodied Shiraz has a long spicy finish. Cellar it for another year or two and enjoy it through 2020+.
Of all my visits around Victoria this time, Giaconda was one of the most fascinating and rewarding. Fascinating because Rick Kinzbrunner is inspired and inspiring, rewarding because the wines are so mind-blowingly good.
(Lisa Perrotti-Brown - Wine Advocate # 189 - Jun 2010)