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Willow Bridge Estate Series Rosa De Solana 2014

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Wine and Winery Information


Appearance: Pale to mid pink/salmon.

Nose: Juicy, jubey fruits…cranberry juice? Squishy rose petal florals and some more earthy, flinty, savoury elements behind - perhaps even some exotic funghi?

Palate: More weight and texture than the colour suggests. More jubey sweet fruits upfront give way to soft, savoury characters in the mid palate, with a twist of citrussy acid on the finish.

Cellaring: Probably at its best before 2017.

Mid-way between tutti fruitti and super savoury. Vibrant, textural and refreshing. Sweet from fresh berry fruits (not sugar) - yet with a hint of earthy sophistication.

Tempranillo hails from and is the most widely planted variety in most of the inland central and northern regions of Spain, most notably Rioja and Ribera del Duero where it is favoured partly for its early ripening (‘temprano’ translates as early) so as to avoid any early autumn rains tracking down off the Bay of Biscay. Unlike the plains in Spain, here in the hills of the Geographe region we rarely have to worry about early rains, however we have found that our elevation provides us with enough day / night temperature variation for Tempranillo to feel right at home, particularly on the 'Solana' - the sunny, North facing side of the hill, delivering excellent ‘typical’ Tempranillo characters. Of the red varieties we grow at Willow Bridge, we believe that Tempranillo is the most suited for making rosé in the dry style we like - where fresh fruits and florals are balanced by more savoury, earthy characters and with a sophisticated texture.

The Season
2014 continued our fantastic run of vintages since the overly maligned 2006. From not long after winter 2013, when the vines started growing again, the weather was a degree or so warmer than our long term average. Early spring was wetter than its usual wet self, setting us up with full soil moisture for the growing season and luckily so as they were followed by the driest summer on record. From the start of December through to when we picked the Tempranillo for rosé on the 27th of February we had only received a miniscule 3mm of rain. This, combined with slightly above average temperatures, gave us some extremely concentrated flavours. 

Our 'Cameron' block of Tempranillo was planted in 2009 on classic freedraining WA "Marri soil" (a deep layer of ironstone gravelly loam over reddish friable clay) with a gentle northwesterly aspect at an elevation of 215 to 230m. The vineyard is very sparsely planted at 1250 vines/Ha. Vines are spur-pruned and vertically trellised.

The fruit was crushed and chilled then kept in contact with the skins for around 24 hours to achieve the desired colour before being pressed off skins. Some barrels were filled with cloudy juice for a warm, natural ferment for texture and complexity whilst the rest of the juice was fermented cool in tank to preserve fresh-fruit purity. The wine was allowed eight months on yeast lees to build texture. When we blended the two batches back together in November, we decided to add one barrel of Semillon (otherwise destined for our BOOKENDS Fumé)

Technical Details
Variety: 88% Tempranillo, 12% Semillon
Region: 100% Geographe, Western Australia
Winemaker: Simon Burnell
Alcohol: 13.4%,
pH: 3.25,
Titratable Acidity: 6.1g/L,
Residual Sugar: <2g/L (ie dry).

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