• 2018 VINTAGE

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    A wonderful season, but interestingly polar opposites to what we experienced for our 2017 vintage. This year we saw a dry Winter and wet Spring, which was in contrast to 2017’s wet Winter and dry Spring. It will be interesting to see the differences in wine styles from the two different growing seasons.

    Lead up to vintage saw a dry Winter and continued conditions saw an earlier than usual budburst which was a concern for frost, but fine weather ensured these events didn’t occur. The team was thrilled to receive the much needed Spring showers that gave canopies across all vineyards a real boost, in turn providing the ideal level of coverage for fruit development and protection from the warmer weather to come.

    The lead up to vintage 2018 was warm and dry which resulted in us starting a week earlier than average. The first fruit to come in was our Homestead Chardonnay that came in on the 8 January, followed by our Pinot Noir and then Semillon from the Lovedale vineyard. Shiraz from the Old Paddock, Old Hill and Rosehill were next, before finishing up with our Sagrantino at the back end of February.

    While there was a bit of a slow start ripeness wise, the warmer Hunter weather remedied this so crops that were lagging behind soon played catch up. The lovely long, warm days throughout vintage ensured ripeness to even out across all varieties and allowed us to pick at optimum sugar and flavour levels. This has resulted in wonderful concentration of flavours that we are already anticipating to be the base for some excellent wines.

    While the tonnage seemed to be on the lighter side this year, the fruit we were pulling in was consistently of excellent quality which you are always thrilled to see as a Winemaker. The Semillon is already displaying evidence of intense flavours with rich and ripe elements complimented by softer acids. The Shiraz we’ve seen keeps true to the Hunter Valley style, wonderfully medium bodied and fruit driven with intense flavours. Our stand outs from this early stage are definitely our Lovedale Semillon along with our OP&OH and Rosehill Shiraz. It will be exciting to see how these wines develop in barrel, tank and bottle to bring this vintage to life. Overall, Vintage 2018 will go down as another classic year in Mount Pleasant and the Hunter Valley.

  • 2017 VINTAGE

    An excellent year in the Hunter Valley. Dry throughout the growing season, the vineyards burst early but a cool spring slowed the growth periods, meaning ripening was around 2-3 weeks later than recent harvests. December saw warm weather with average rainfall allowing for healthy and clean canopies giving excellent ripening conditions. January and February saw significantly lower than average rainfall conditions which meant ripening was even and let the team have the ability to pick fruit at its optimum ripeness. The Semillon blocks were picked slightly riper than normal due to the warm weather, with excellent power and flavour levels at slightly higher Baumes than average. The Shiraz blocks all ripened beautifully with excellent flavour concentration. The Estate blocks came in first with intensity and colour the hallmark of these darker fruited wines. Rosehill was the last fruit to be picked, with the old vines standing up again, producing wines with finesse and grace.

  • 2016 VINTAGE

    The lead up to 2016 was superb, beautiful cool and dry conditions throughout veraison providing excellent clean and healthy fruit and canopies. Extensive hail damage to our Rosehill vineyard in December 2015 meant there will be no wines from this vineyard for 2016. The wettest January since 1972 followed, testing winemakers patience, with picking pushed back to see this period out. The impact was seen across our red blocks, with many canopies shutting down and concerns that the fruit would ripen sufficiently. After this the driest February on record saved most of the vineyards, with Picking 1-2 weeks behind average with lower than normal crops. The grapes were then predominantly hand-picked to ensure only the best fruit was taken and the resultant wines clean and fresh. The Old Hill Shiraz vines showed their true character with wonderful fruit and exceptional power. The Semillon vines at Lovedale held and produced some alluring fine wines.

    Name Varietal Drinking Window
    2016 Elizabeth Semillon
    2016 Eight Acres Semillon
  • 2015 VINTAGE

    A tough vintage for certain areas of the valley. Rainfall was high, typical of what the Hunter can deliver, but the amazing ability of the vines to withstand these rain events truly astounds. The lead up to harvest was great, cool conditions, dry and lovely fruit set led to great crops at an average yield. The rainfall throughout vintage tested winemakers, with careful selective picking required to ensure the highest quality was achieved.

    Name Varietal Drinking Window
    Elizabeth Semillon To be enjoyed now and over the next 15 years
  • 2014 VINTAGE

    After the hot dry end to 2013, near perfect January weather has resulted in an outstanding vintage of intensity and wonderful balance. The whites are pristine & pure, with great length & line while the flavour packed reds are showing early signs of a superb year in the Hunter Valley. The best red vintage in 50 years. The Mount Pleasant Shiraz quickly followed the Semillon, revealing tremendous colour and flavour from the onset. Both the ‘Old Hill’ (Planted 1880) and the ‘Old Paddock’ (planted 1921) being the stars off the estate. Rosehill Shiraz was last, but by no means least. Lovely perfume & spice coupled with fruit intensity & perfect structure, sees Rosehill vying for ‘line honours’ in a great vintage for Hunter Shiraz.

    Arguably, one of the greatest red vintages in living memory.

    Name Varietal Drinking Window
    1965 Vines Shiraz Up to 40 years with careful cellaring
    1880 Vines Shiraz Will cellar for up to 35 years
    1921 Vines Shiraz
  • 2013 Vintage

    Heavy rainfall early in 2012 followed by an extremely dry Spring reduced yields, but certainly not quality. Harvest commenced mid January with most Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Semillon picked before the late Summer rain set in. The Shiraz ripened slowly and will produce some outstanding red wines. Overall 2013 vintage was excellent.

  • 2012 Vintage

    The 2012 vintage will be remembered as a vintage of two halves, before and after the rain. The Semillon and Chardonnay harvested prior to the rain event provided classic style and quality. A mild Summer and heavy rains in mid/late January dampened development of the Shiraz, and as a result not all premium ranges of the varietal are likely to be produced. Pinot Noir was harvested with terrific colour, richness and texture proving vine age has its advantages in the Hunter’s unique weather conditions.

    Name Varietal Drinking Window
    Classic Verdelho NOW
  • 2011 Vintage

    Excellent growing conditions creating a near perfect harvest. The fruit reached optimal ripeness with absolutely no disease. The fruit quality was excellent.

    Name Varietal Drinking Window
    Elizabeth Semillon NOW-2018
    Leontine Chardonnay NOW-2018
    Mothervine Pinot Noir NOW-2016
    Mount Henry Shiraz Pinot Noir NOW-2016