May 17, 2009

Kurtz's Bubbles

Sorry to keep you waiting.

Chinskirin is recovering comfortably in hospital. The doctors assure us there is little permanent damage.

We have reached for and grasped our sparkling grail. All that's left is to determine whether it is worthy of the journey.

Moorilla's owner may be circumspect about his art purchases and reluctant to discuss his casino winnings, but he is enormously forthcoming with technical notes on his wines (thanks Danny).

I jotted down a few which I reprint from my notebook in toto:

Moorilla 2004 Muse Sparkling Brut.

The fruit is from two vineyards, the St. Matthias (West Bank, Tamar River) and another in Winkleigh. Both sites are low yielding.

St. Matthias Vineyard fruit was all hand-picked on March 19, 2004.

Winkleigh Pinot noir was hand-picked on March 27, 2004 and the Chardonnay was hand-picked on the 30th.

Blend: 64% Pinot noir, 36% Chardonnay.

Fruit was whole-bunch pressed. Cool ferment in stainless steel tanks. Fine lees for six months except 32% which was held in oak barriques for maturation. No malo. Secondary fermentation in bottle. Disgorged in October, 2008. Total time on lees: 4 years, 5 months.

On the nose, the Brut has distinctive autolytics that I'm beginning to associate with the region, grape must and brioche. The fruit is bright and fresh, lemon and its zest. There is a faint mineral undertone throughout that emerges like cool granite on the finish. This is very elegant, very interesting and very, very young.

I have laid several down in Chinskirin's cellar. I think this, like Tasmanian wine in general, has huge potential.

And the Brut Rosé was even better!

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