2018 Dodger Tempranillo
Our Kalleske vineyard and farm was established at Greenock in the Barossa’s North-West in 1853. Since the early 1900s, the ‘dodger’ has been indispensible in the vineyard. The vine dodger is a mechanical weeder that removes weeds from around the vines whilst dodging the vines themselves. In the early years the dodger was pulled by a horse and steered by hand and then in the 1960s the horse was replaced by a tractor. Fundamentally the dodger hasn’t changed much and today it is still used to naturally control the weeds in our vineyards. Dodger Tempranillo is a single vineyard wine that’s been grown, vintaged and matured on our Kalleske property. Vigilant grapegrowing, traditional winemaking and maturation in seasoned French oak hogsheads has resulted in a sophisticated, medium bodied Tempranillo displaying classic structure and varietal expression typical of our Kalleske vineyard.
The 2018 vintage was superb. Winter was slightly wetter than average getting the vines off to a brilliant start leading them into Spring which was warmer and drier than average. Rain in early December refreshed the vines and ensured they remained strong and healthy for the overall dry and hot Summer. Autumn also remained dry with perfect Autumnal temperatures leading into harvest. The 2018 yields are good and the quality is excellent, a classic Barossa vintage.
The single-vineyard Dodger Tempranillo block is the newest variety on the Kalleske property. The hand-pruned vines are low-yielding and are grown in sandy loam soil with quartz and ironstone over deep red clay.
The grapes were picked on March 14th 2018 and then destemmed into small open top fermenters. The must was wild-fermented for 14 days on skins with skins submerged for the entire time. After pressing off skins the Tempranillo was filled to seasoned French oak hogsheads where it underwent natural malolactic fermentation in barrel. Dodger was matured in barrel for thirteen months prior to bottling.
2018 Dodger Tempranillo is dark red in colour.
The aroma is lifted and bursting with energy. There are characters of plum sauce, earth, spice, charcuterie, roasted herbs and a touch of mint.
The medium bodied palate displays upfront red forest fruits along with spice, leather and graphite. Adding dimension are natural savoury tannins that are chewy but finely integrated. Seasoned oak maturation respects the varietal characters. The finish is lengthy completing a very smart wine. Overall this is a very harmonious and varietally true Tempranillo. Dodger can be enjoyed now or over the next eight years.