In “Old Vines in Barossa,” Christopher Tanghe interviews Barossa winemakers and viticulturalists, including PRUE HENSCHKE, about “old vines and the benefits of their age.” Henschke’s family “owns several vineyards that are more than 125 years old, classified as ‘ancestor vines’ in the Eden Valley,” Tanghe notes. Henschke discusses the HILL OF GRACE and MOUNT EDELSTONE vineyards in detail, which date back to the 1860s and 1912, respectively. Henschke remarks that the mortality rate in her vineyards is about 1%: “After 100, 150 years actually, those vines have survived through every drought and flood that has been sort of thrown at them, and they’re still very healthy. It’s amazing.”
The 2012 Estrecho was even better, with a lightly floral nose of cigar ash, dried tarragon, chocolate, and fresh raspberries. The acidity led the tannins, and the palate was taut. The result is a stripped-down wine of purity, despite its abundant big red fruit.
“The 2011 Las Quebradas displayed a leafy nose of olive, iron, black cherry, black pepper, and leather. In the mouth, it was restrained and bright, with a pop of acidity and ripe but clinging tannins tickling the finish.”