This wine is made by Giles Cooke and Fergal Tynan of Alliance Wine, in conjunction with Aussie winemaker Peter Leske. It’s a single vineyard, old vine Grenache from the Barossa, and it captures the more Pinot-like side of this variety, which I think is a good thing. Winemaking is small batch, with open fermenters, hand plunging, and ageing in large, mainly older oak. Giles says he’s looking for ‘vitality, energy, aromatics and texture,’ and I think he’s achieved that here. There’s also a Thistledown Vagabond Grenache from Blewitt Springs in the McLaren Vale, which is also really good. But my favourite is this Thorny Devil, with its floral aromatics and lovely texture.
Thistledown Thorny Devil Grenache 2014 Barossa, Australia
From the southern edge of the valley, this is highly aromatic with floral red cherry fruit and a lush, liqueur-like raspberry fruit quality. Supple and smooth in the mouth with bright fresh red cherry fruit. This is a bit Pinot-like, but has a grippy, spicy edge. Such a pretty expression of Grenache. 92/100
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