Rolf Binder - Hales Shiraz 2012Australian Red Wine
The Hales Shiraz is 89% Barossa Shiraz with the addition of 4% Grenache and 7% Mataro. Most of the Shiraz is home grown from the Stephanie vineyard with 20% of the Shiraz coming from the Light Pass grower Heardon, and the other 25% from Doeke at Seppeltsfield Road whose vineyard is opposite our Heysen vineyard. These Vineyards lie along the Western edge of the Barossa Valley.
Rolf Binder comments, "This wine is a mixture of grapes selected from our own vineyards and those of growers with whom we have been working for many years. I am a great believer that a grower will always intimately know his own vineyards, know what is best for his vines, and his individual patches of vines. Therefore taking into account the yearly growing conditions, a grower will have a feeling for what yield the vines will carry. Our growers have pride and are conscious of quality.
I like to observe these vineyards all year round and find that this gives me a good understanding of what the vine gives and how to prepare for the harvest. My involvement in the vineyards starts after the flowering when the crop level can be assessed. This is now the time to decide if the set has been abundant, or if there should be some crop removal to the assist the vine ensuring an even optimum ripening. This rarely happens as the grower has a good feeling for the vine and ensures that his winter pruning is done to give quality over quantity.
Next, in the ripening stage, is to monitor the irrigation in each relevant vineyard. The most critical time to me for the vine is the colouring (veraison). Here the vine must be healthy and have good leaf cover to ensure an optimum level of sunlight interception. I like to gradually give the vine less water so that, as they ripen, they slowly fill themselves with the grape reserves, and at the same time cause a slight shrivel, increasing the skin to juice ratio.
The decision to pick is based on the flavour and level of seed ripeness, giving us the confidence of there being harmonious tannins in the grape."