Tuesday, April 22, 2008



Woodstock Contact Details
Woodstock Winery & CoteriePO Box 150McLaren Vale SA 5171
Douglas Gully RoadMcLaren Flat SA 5171
T: +61 (0)8 8383 0156F: +61 (0)8 8383 0437

Winemaking and wine

Woodstock Riesling
The term “Rhine Riesling” was used in Australia until the mid 1990s when international agreements forbid the term “Rhine” for wines outside the Rhine Valley in Germany. Until then “Riesling” was a generic Australian term for a white wine style, dry, crisp and unoaked. Nowadays the term “Riesling” on a wine label must refer to the grape variety, not the generic style.

Woodstock Riesling is made only from Riesling grapes grown at Woodstock, McLaren Flat on sandy soils. The generous grape flavours are captured early while they still hold crisp natural acid, before they fully ripen. Below baume levels of 11.5º, Woodstock Rieslings retain a lively “lime juice” flavour that persists in the finished wine.

Only the free-run juice is used for Woodstock Riesling, to capture the very best flavours of this noble variety. Citrus and floral aromas followed by generous flavour and length with a crisp finish can be expected from Woodstock Rieslings. Chilled Rieslings can match up with many fish preparations.

As Rieslings age, they become more flavoursome and more enjoyable alone, without food. They can continue to develop flavour for over ten years with careful (cool) cellaring.
Young Riesling can also make a refreshing long drink in the summer. Mix it with soda water like the Austrians do in Vienna and make a “spritzer"

Food suggestion: Lightly battered, fresh South Australian King George Whiting served with tossed salad and chilled Woodstock Riesling, is a great combination. Woodstock Semillon Sauvignon BlancThe clone of Semillon vines grown at Woodstock create tropical fruit flavours, more expected of Sauvignon Blanc.

The grapes are harvested when these tropical flavours peak. Choice of yeast and winemaking methods enhance these tropical flavours.

The proportion of Sauvignon Blanc added varies between vintages, approximately 10% to 30%. Woodstock Five Feet Viognier RieslingThe name “Five Feet” refers to the original stocks in the town of Woodstock, England, which have five leg holes to hold “Five Feet”.

Viognier is the dominant variety in this “red drinker’s white”.
An ancestor of Vitis vinifera, Viognier has the tannin structure of some red wines. Woodstock Five Feet Viognier Riesling shows big mouth feel and zesty tightness.
The big, ripe Viognier flavours are balanced with other varieties to add finesse to the bold Viognier characters.

Check vintage specific tasting notes for more information.
Food suggestion: Roast lamb, mint peas and all the trimmings.
Woodstock ChardonnayWoodstock Chardonnays are made to grow in flavour with bottle aging. Made mostly from McLaren Vale and sometimes including Limestone Coast grapes which are low cropping for maximum flavour.

Partial barrel fermentation, partial second fermentation (malo-lactic) and some new oak techniques are used to introduce complexity.
In youth, Woodstock Chardonnays appear subtle and fruit driven with some underlying complexity. With cellaring, the palate grows to reveal a complex, lingering array of flavours. All derived from fruit, oak and yeast and all growing with maturation to reveal the secondary “food-like” flavours intended. The integrated oak is subtle but persistent and soft.

Woodstock Chardonnays are usually at their best about two to four years after bottling. At this age they are best served cool, not cold so the mouth filling flavours can show their best.
Food suggestion: A serving suggestion is the smoked chicken stack.

Chardonnay matches well with chicken, white meat and vegetarian dishes.
Woodstock RoséThe fresh raspberry and cherry aromas of Grenache are captured in Woodstock Rosé. The crushed grapes are cold soaked to break down the flesh, then drained from the red skins and fermented like a white wine.
The ferment is stopped with refrigeration leaving some natural sweetness.
Woodstock Rosé is deeper in colour, aroma and flavour than most classic Rosé styles, with the fleshy flavours of Grenache.

Woodstock GrenacheGrown on old bush vines at Woodstock, McLaren Flat the Grenache is always ripe and generous. The fruit flavour is simple and “sweet”, without new oak and without added tannin. Usually, about ten percent Shiraz is added, to soften and balance the Grenache. Woodstock Grenache is usually at its best two to four years after bottling, while the youthful flavours mellow.

Food suggestion: The simple berry fruits and lively flavours of youthful tart Grenache can be a delightful drink with pasta dishes or try it lightly chilled over a lazy summer lunch.

Woodstock Five Feet Cabernet ShirazThe name 'Five Feet' refers to the original wooden stocks in the town Woodstock, England which have five leg holes, to hold 'Five Feet'.

Woodstock Five Feet Cabernet Shiraz blends up to five varieties with Cabernet Sauvignon predominant. Other varieties that compliment Cabernet Sauvignon are; Malbec, Petit Verdot, Merlot and Shiraz. Proportions of these varieties vary with vintage.

These varieties are sourced mainly from Wirrega Vineyards , Limestone Coast and Angas Vineyards at Langhorne Creek with some Cabernet Sauvignon from Woodstock, McLaren Flat.
The noble Cabernet Sauvignon is the backbone of this blend with attractive leafy, sometimes herbal aromas and ample tannin structure. Langhorne Creek Malbec offers unlikely menthol–like characters which compliment the Cabernet Sauvignon surprisingly well.

Petit Verdot is a rising star of Australian red varietals. It sits somewhere between Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon, but is not quite like either. Petit Verdot shows an aromatic violet aroma which comes back on the aftertaste as a lingering “sweetness”, calling to be tasted again.
Merlot offers the well-known ability to enhance Cabernet Sauvignon and to stand up as a serious red wine on its own.

Big, generous Shiraz can round off the edges and add some richness to the blend.
The firm, angular tannin structure of Cabernet Sauvignon and sometimes Petit Verdot and Merlot are balanced by the soft, round mouth-feel of Malbec and the body of Shiraz.
Although the blend sounds complicated, the name is simple, “Five Feet”. It can be cellared confidently for six to eight years from bottling, but is enjoyable as a younger wine with all these varietal flavours mingling and enhancing each other’s virtues.

Food suggestion: Woodstock’s recommended food to match the "Five Feet" is the Antipasto Encroute. This spectacular layered bread is simple to make at home then take out for picnics with a bottle or two of Woodstock Five Feet. Woodstock Cabernet SauvignonMcLaren Vale has enough warmth and sunshine to consistently fully ripen Cabernet Sauvignon. Persistent “chocolatey” flavours are characteristic and often enhanced by a “mint” character perhaps associated with abundant eucalypt trees surrounding the Woodstock vineyard at McLaren Flat.
The small Cabernet Sauvignon berries yield an intense dark wine which is barrel aged for about two years to soften the firm tannins. After cellaring, the classic leafy Cabernet Sauvignon flavours can change to “tobacco” or “cigar box” characters.

Sometimes a small portion of Limestone Coast or Langhorne Creek Cabernet Sauvignon is added to boost these varietal characters. However the rich middle palate flavour of McLaren Vale Cabernet Sauvignon is the essence of this wine.
Woodstock Cabernet Sauvignon can be enjoyed young or cellared for up to ten years after bottling for complexity.

Food suggestion: Woodstock Cabernet Sauvignon can be confidently served with many foods especially red meats or cheeses. One suggestion is the medallions of beef with cabernet grape jam and onion glaze.

Woodstock Shiraz CabernetThis Shiraz dominant blend rewards barrel maturation time with generous, mouth-filling flavours and textures. In some vintages, we may add small portions of other varieties to maintain this consistent, robust, yet soft style
Woodstock ShirazFrom humble beginnings as a full-bodied McLaren Vale Shiraz with generous ripe, earthy flavours, the Woodstock Shiraz has grown to incorporate the intense spice of Limestone Coast and the plums of Langhorne Creek.

Nothing was lost in the transition. In fact the depth and breadth of flavour grew as the vineyards matured.

Although aged in small oak, only a small portion are new barrels. This allows strong varietal expression complimented with toasty oak flavours, while the wine gains traditional barrel maturation.

McLaren Vale, Limestone Coast and Langhorne Creek consistently ripen all red varieties, especially Shiraz. Modest yields and healthy vines ensure baume levels achieve 14º easily and more if required.

Woodstock Shiraz is usually harvested between 13.5º and 15º Baume, but flavour is the key in deciding harvest dates.

Bottled Australian sunshine, with generous mouth-filling flavour and balance between the astringency of acids and natural tannins, and the sweetness of ripe Shiraz grapes.
Very drinkable as a young wine. Age will help soften and build the flavours for up to ten years after bottling with careful cellaring.

Matching Food Suggestion> Woodstock Shiraz drinks well with another bottle, but food can be good also. One suggestion is this goats curd and tomato tartlet.

Pastry tartlet filled with goats curd, basil and slow roasted Roma tomatoes with “basil oils” and parmesan shards. To make “basil oils” combine olive oil with fresh green basil and repeat with purple basil. Woodstock "The Stocks" ShirazThis is Woodstock’s finest red wine from each vintage, sourced from ancient Shiraz vines at Woodstock, McLaren Flat.

The century old vines yield modest, ripe crops packed with intense richness and leathery flavours. Wine for the “The Stocks” is given the best treatment. Picked at optimum ripeness, fermented in small vessels and in new oak, and carefully monitored through winemaking.
Only the best barrels are chosen for this flagship red wine from Woodstock.

“The Stocks” Shiraz usually benefits from “breathing” before serving, both as a young wine and after cellaring. “Breathing” will enhance colour and fruit characters of a younger wine.
“The Stocks” Shiraz wines have enough flavour and natural preservatives to cellar well for up to twelve years. The enjoyable fruit and oak flavours start to mingle and evolve secondary flavours after six years of careful cellaring. As a mature wine, the bottle should be stood for an hour or two after selection from the cellar, before carefully decanting to remove any sediment that deposits with age. “Breathing” after decanting will help the older wine focus its individual character and to show its best. This may sound like a hassle, but it can certainly be worth the effort.

Food suggestion: A wine of this flavour and intensity is almost a meal on its own, and will stand up well in the company of rich, red meat preparations. Savour the lingering flavours after the main course and before dessert, perhaps with a cheese selection.

Woodstock Botrytis Sweet White
Botrytis cinera or “Noble Rot” is a fungus that grows on fruit. In cool, moist, autumn conditions, the botrytis can attack white grapes, turning them pink and making them shrivel, becoming sweeter. Chenin Blanc, Riesling, Semillon and sometimes White Frontignac varieties are used, depending on which grapes actually get the botrytis infection.
The grape flavours change to “apricot” and “marmalade” characters, and natural acidity intensifies during this process.
Woodstock Botrytis Sweet White is harvested as the berries turn pink and start to shrivel, when natural sweetness is very high (18 to 22°Baume). Yeast is added to the crushed grapes and left to start fermentation and natural separation. Bubbles given off lift grape particles to a floating upper layer, while the clear golden liquid ferments below. After four to seven days, this golden liquid is drained away to be finished, filtered and bottled as Botrytis Sweet White.
Partial fermentation on skins extract those “marmalade” flavours and some grape tannins which help balance the luscious sweetness. With bottle aging, these luscious flavours evolve into “peaches and cream” and then “butterscotch” six to ten years from bottling. Although very sweet at first, the natural acid and tannin astringency balances the sweetness to finish with a clean and lingering flavour.

Woodstock Vintage Fortified
Woodstock makes vintage “ports” or “fortifieds” about every ten years. The 1984, 1994 and 2005 vintages were generous in quality and sweetness, so were ideal for this style. The 1984 and 1994 were bottled before news of the international trade agreements prohibiting use of the name “Port” outside Portugal.
The 2005 is a fortified, McLaren Vale Shiraz made in the traditional Australian VP style. Big, ripe and flavoursome. Ideal for cellaring for 20 years or more.

The Woodstock 1994 is a blend of Grenache and Shiraz, unlike most which tend to be straight Shiraz. Dryer than most Australian styles with some tannin and varietal complexity, the Woodstock 1994 Vintage Port 375 mL makes a tasty partner to an after-dinner cheese plate.

Woodstock Very Old Fortified
International trade agreements will prohibit the term “Port” and debate is raging over “Tawny” for those styles made outside of Portugal, hence the term “Very Old Fortified”. Doug Collett made many fine fortified McLaren Vale Grenache and Shiraz wines which he stored away in small oak barrels.

Each year five percent is lost to evaporation from each barrel. Both alcohol and water evaporate, but the sweetness flavours remain.

The Woodstock Very Old Fortified is around twenty years old at bottling.
The flavours are concentrated and the red colour has mostly oxidised away to a true “tawny” colour after two decades in barrel.

Sip after dinner and see how long the aftertaste lingers. Woodstock Very Old Fortified matches well with coffee, a smoke and a good yarn. Woodstock MuscatVery ripe McLaren Vale Red and White Frontignac are fortified with pure grape spirit “on skins” just after fermentation starts. The luscious natural sugars and intense muscat flavours are best captured and preserved this way. The fortified skins are then pressed, the wine filtered and then aged in oak.
Woodstock Muscat has an average age of five years at bottling, and a blend of old with younger muscats gives the best balance of flavours.

An intensely flavoured, lusciously sweet fortified wine that can replace dessert or match up with chocolate for a decadent dose of sweetness.

Woodstock Muscat keeps well in the bottle, but does not really benefit from bottle age.

No comments: