Herein lies a story that dates back to the 1960s when John’s father Colin planted the vineyard for this wine. Typically, he selected an isolated spot of lean and tough soils where nothing else would grow, knowing it was these soils that produced the small crops of intensely flavoured fruit needed to make exceptional wine. In the new vineyard, in one corner up on a rise, the soil profile was even tougher. Here some of the young vines failed to survive and needed replacing. In time the replanted vines revealed themselves to be Mataro and not Grenache, readily spotted by the fact that the birds love ripe Mataro over Grenache and zeroed in on them every season! Who was responsible for the mix up remains a mystery but the Grenache and Mataro have become life partners as each vintage we pick, crush, ferment and bottle them together. In the autumn 2008, the Eden Valley experienced one of the most severe heat waves in known history. The relief that a cool winter brings was tempered by the ongoing low rainfalls and we began the 2009 growing season with very dry soils. Many vines would struggle to survive these harsh conditions, let alone produce a crop of grapes, but our old block of Grenache and Mataro read the conditions well and set a very light crop. Whilst the low yields of one tonne per acre were less than we’d like, the outstanding quality of the fruit more than compensated. The co-fermented fruit was matured or 2 years in old large oak to allow the gentler fragrance of the Grenache to shine through. The 2009 vintage has produced a lovely savoury, earthy wine showing a bright and spicy palate of red fruits balanced by a fine grained tannin grip derived from the Mataro.