“High Noon” Seminar at Hospices du Rhone 2011

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So far, we’ve experienced Rhone Varietals from French and California producers. Today’s seminar focus on High Noon winery, established in 1976, by the Noon family of McLaren Vale.  The seminar focuses on information about the terroir of the region and winemaking techniques.

The most important thing to understand is that McLaren Vale is an area with very complex soilThe noon family grows mostly Grenache. It is an area with a maritime influence, and no phylloxera.

The first wine we taste is a rose wine from shiraz grapes. It is med intensity in color, translucent, clear, and scintillating. The nose is redolent of deep ripe red cherries. On the palate, the wine is very strong and assertive and powerful, yet brightened by high acidity and a long, mineral finish.

2009 Reserve Shiraz “20 Rows Vineyard Langhorne Creek” is a deep purple color, nose of richness — a deep purple velvet aroma. Palate is rich with concentrated purple/blue fruit, very full bodied.

1999 Grenache Solaire, Winery East Vineyard is a late harvested grenache — color is a brighter garnet, lighter from age, with nose of deep concentrated perfumed fruit. They make two or three barrels, when the conditions are ripe, “just for fun.”  It’s a very well balanced wine, put in old barrels, leave it to ferment on skin, and then mature in old wood for 18 months. You will find 15 grams residual sugar with 17.5 alcohol. 

Now we taste barrel samples from 2010 wines …  2010 Grenache Eclipse component barrel sample is a juicy red wine with concentrated fruit on the palate, and finish of rich fruit and vanilla. The 2010 Shiraz Eclipse Component – (destemmed) has a scintillating red purple, with a rich nose of black/blue fruit, and a palate lively acidity and long juicy finish. By contrast, the whole bunch pressed 2010 Shiraz Eclipse Component  has a less scintillating color, nose is rustic wild black/blue fruit, and palate has an intense minerality and less acidity and is more subdued/complex in general. The whole bunch pressed wine has more tannin and complexity. 

Very interesting panel about McLaren Vale and Noon!



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