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.
Quality from 2019 is stunning. It was a warm and extremely dry growing season with rainfall down significantly (39%), making it one of the driest years in the past century. Summer was 3 degrees warmer than average. Yields were impacted by the dry season, leading to smaller berries and bunches. Importantly quality is brilliant producing richly flavoured, intense wines.
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 8th 2019 and then destemmed into small open top fermenters. The must was wild-fermented for 12 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.
2019 Dodger Tempranillo is ruby-red in colour.
It is immediately varietal on the aroma with uplifting characters of dried fig, dark cherry, leather, tobacco, clove spice and a hint of cedar.
The clear varietal traits continue to the medium-bodied palate. An initial silky texture gives way to pleasant drying tannins, naturally integrated. Fruits are generally dark in flavour with stewed plum and licorice together with a touch of seasoned oak. The length of this wine is long. Overall a finely balanced Tempranillo, displaying solid varietal flavours. Dodger can be enjoyed now or over the next eight years.