Tasting Notes & Technical DetailsThis wine is pale gold in colour with a lime-edge. Impressively light, elegant and zesty with vibrant flavours of lemon, freshly cut grass, and subtle spicy oak over a layer of restrained creamy texture. Stylish and balanced on the finish.
Mount Horrocks Wines is owned by winemaker Stephanie Toole, who carefully crafts “essentially hand-made food wines” with an emphasis on structure as well as generous fruit flavours. Stephanie restricts production to no more than 2,500 cases each year in order to achieve her aims of quality and single-vineyard expression.
Stephanie purchased Mount Horrocks Wines in 1993, and in 2000 she purchased land to commence planting her own vineyards. The 'Cordon Cut' vineyard at Auburn close to the cellar door is planted only to Riesling; the 'Alexander' vineyard at Watervale for Shiraz; and the ‘Watervale’ vineyard for Riesling, SemiIIon, Nero d'Avola and Cabernet Sauvignon. All three estate-owned Clare Valley vineyards, totalling ten hectares, are now ‘A grade certified’ organic and biodynamic (ACO). As all fruit is hand-picked and gently handled, no finings have been found necessary, meaning that all wines are suitable for vegans and vegetarians.
Having overseen the regeneration of the land, Stephanie believes this involves more than certification – it requires a different way of thinking. Classic, no-compromise winemaking combined with a fully integrated organic and biodynamic approach to growing and making, sets Mount Horrocks wines apart from the mainstream.
Each release from Stephanie seems to eclipse the quality standard set by the previous vintage. The 'Watervale' Riesling is a regional classic, the Semillon is barrel fermented and exquisite, while the 'Cordon Cut' Riesling ranks among Australia's best sweet wines. Stephanie's Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz are ethereal, elegant expressions from Clare and get better every year. Stephanie decided to make a Nero d'Avola after falling for the variety on a trip to Sicily. Hand-picked at full ripeness, it is a wine that is bright and lively, with medium weight and bursting with muscular fruit.
The Mount Horrocks Semillon is from a low yielding, north facing vineyard in Watervale, sitting at an altitude of 480 meters above sea level. It has been an Australian Certified Organic (ACO) wine since 2014. Harvest is always done by hand.
2021 was Horrocks' first certified biodynamic vintage and it was an excellent vintage in the Clare Valley. Summer was cool, which promoted a slow, gentle ripening. The quality of the fruit was excellent and yields were slightly lower than average due to a lack of water.
Upon arrival at the winery, the hand-harvested grapes were crushed and destemmed. This wine was 100% barrel-fermented in French oak barriques, of which 40% were new. Lees stirring took place every two weeks for three months, and the wine remained on the lees to age for a further nine months. As always, the wine was bottled without fining.