2008 Kay Brothers Amery Vineyard Basket Pressed Mataro

The heritage-listed Kay Brothers Winery in the McLaren Vale has grown Mataro, the Spanish term or Mourvedre to use its French name, since the 1890's. The Barossa Valley has purportedly the oldest vines of this varietal in the world dating even further back to the time of the Crimean War.
Mataro / Mourvedre Grapes

The grape's popularity has waxed and waned over the years in sync with its blending partner Grenache right up until the recent upsurge in GSM blends. The tannins and alcohol of Mataro complement the Grenache with structure in addition to earthy, gamey flavours. Unblended examples are rare despite the varietal's extensive growth in the Vale and the Valley but are worth trying if you can get hold of them. Aged in American oak hogsheads for twelve months prior to bottling, this is the first release of the Kay Brothers Basket Pressed Mataro. 

Deep ruby red in colour with intense smokey, red and blackberry fruit aromas on the nose. Visualise the waft of fruit-laden punnets after a fire and this is what you get. Throw a little licorice, cinnamon and white pepper into the mix and you enhance the intriguing aromatic profile.   The palate reveals more brooding berry fruit flavours and dried herbs in addition to bitter black olives, spicy mince pie and tobacco leaf, which were nice. Leather and an earthiness that led me to think of farmyards, add a certain rustic element to the Mataro that I quite liked too but the alcohol heat disappointed. Fine chalky tannins and a smooth, savoury finish make this medium bodied Mataro a serious and complex wine that will develop further with age. Overall, a wine that I neither liked nor disliked but at an affordable price point, a good example to explore this varietal.  

Source: Retail Purchase. Alcohol: 15.0%. Closure: Screwcap. 
Rating: 89 Points.
Website:  http://www.kaybrothersamerywines.com/    

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