I tasted this wine about four months ago and bought several bottles. Recently I tried one and was immediately reminded of its class.
The following notes are from a Vintage Cellars tasting I attended last year.
This is the first bottling of ‘La Solana’ a non-vintage, barrel matured white blend maintained in a modified solera system. Peter Schell commenced the blend in 2005 with small portions of white wine parcels, that are also components of Spinifex’s Lola, being added each year. The wine is matured on lees in old barriques. The barrels are stored outside in the elements and hence the name Solana, meaning “under the sun”. The composition of La Solana mirrors that of Lola over the years, being based on Barossa and Eden Valley Ugni blanc, Semillon, Vermentino, Viognier, Marsanne and Roussanne. The average age of wines in this first bottling is estimated at 4 years.
This is a fascinating wine really unlike anything else produced in Australia. A very complex nose that has a myriad of aromatics include dried pear, preserved lemon, dried fruits and nut notes. The palate is concentrated and complex with some flor and marzipan characters meshed with citrus and stone fruits characters with a very long nutty finish. Has wonderful verve and freshness.
Peter Schell and his wife Magali Gely have been making a series of amazing wines in the Barossa for about 15 years. They have a great wine making backgrounds and generally use grape varieties associated with the Southern Rhone valley of France. All their “Spinifex” labelled wines are worth seeking out from their lower level reds up to the premium shiraz blends which are wonderful classically styled wines with many years of life in front of them.And don’t forget their very popular rose as well.
Spinifex is a winery that isn’t interested in producing high alcohol fruit bombs that many of us have come to associate with the Barossa and other parts of South Australia. They understand the need for flavour balance. The skill of the winemaker is clearly evident here and he shows great fidelity to the grape variety and the region.
I can heartily recommend all the wines from Spinifex. They are fairly priced and available from specialist wine shops as well as the big chains.