Rathfinny Wine Estate

Blending Trials 2020

We have been busy at the Winery over the last few weeks blending base wines from the 2019 harvest. Although it was a difficult year in terms of weather (summer, where were you?), we are very pleased with the quality of the wines produced.

When creating blends, we often use the analogy of the painter, the canvas, the tubes of paint and the palette. It is true to some extent: we have a choice of many different varieties, clones and tanks to play with. But unlike the painter who will mix blue and yellow and always create a green colour, blending wines can prove a bit unpredictable.

One very fragrant, elegant and complex wine blended with a very sharp, acidic and vibrant wine sounds like a winner, right? Well, not always. Some combinations work like a charm, some completely and unexpectedly alter the profile of the blend. Needless to say, with so many different wines in the cellar, there are thousands of potential blends.

Creating vintage wines is also very different compared to creating non-vintage wines. With the former we want to express the best we can out of a single vintage, while with the latter we’d want to create a blend consistent with previous blends, so the wine tastes the same year after year – something quite challenging.

Blending is a fantastic moment. All the labour in the Vineyard, all the attention and dedication to the vines, all the care we take at the Winery, it all comes down to this gathering in the blending room.

We proudly created a vintage Blanc de Blancs (100% Chardonnay), a Blanc de Noirs (only Pinot Noir and Meunier), a Rosé and our Classic Cuvée (all three varieties in both these wines). We are now fining the wines, to “clean” them. We will revisit the blends to confirm we’re definitely happy with those and we’ll finally blend and cold-stabilise prior to bottling, scheduled for June (fingers crossed). Then, once again, the waiting game will begin until these wine are released in 2023.

We will now return to isolation in the cellar. In the meantime, in these challenging times, please stay safe, protect yourself, and protect and help others.

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