With many of the 2017 vintage white varieties now safely in the winery, Hunter Valley’s Gartelmann Wines has released two wines from their family inspired range of wines; the 2015 Gartelmann ‘Sarah Elizabeth’ Chardonnay (92/100 Halliday) and 2016 Gartelmann ‘Jessica’ Verdelho.
The new wines, made by Hunter Valley winemaker Liz Jackson, are named in honour of owner Jan Gartelmann’s mother Jessica and daughter Sarah.
As a family owned and operated business we take great pride in having our family front and centre on our wines.
These two wines are quintessential Hunter Valley varieties.
The two new vintages are from very different vintages. 2015 was almost perfect, with good rain at the right time. 2016 on the other hand was undoubtedly very difficult. The forecast was good, but 90 mm of rain prior to Christmas was only the prequel to the down pouring of 220 mm in early January.
Surprisingly, with the clay soils and slopes of the Verdelho vineyard, the water simply ran off and our 2016 Verdelho is better than the previous year.
The 2015 Gartelmann ‘Sarah Elizabeth’ Chardonnay was made from 18 year-old vines located in the Upper Hunter Valley region.
We are aiming for a richer style with attractive oak balance,” explained Jorg. “We matured 60 per cent of the wine for nine months in a combination of new and one-year-old French oak puncheons and hogsheads. The remaining component was matured in older oak to ensure that oak to fruit balance.
Monthly lees stirring and inhibiting malolactic fermentation preserved the fruit freshness whilst building palate texture and structure.
It is that time of the year again, the first part of harvest is complete, however there is still a lot to come; So you are asking yourselves: it has been terribly hot weather, what does it look like for Gartelmann Wines for the 2017 Vintage?
The wines that have come in are all from the Hunter Valley. But the weather was not all bad. In Pokolbin and Denman there was only 1 day over 35 degrees in November with the maximum temperature 3 degrees over the 45 year average, In December similar but 3 non consecutive days over 35 degrees, and more, but mostly non-consecutive hot days.
What have we got in so far?
Sparkling white base for our 2017 Blanc de Blancs. Harvested early morning on 13 January, it copped 3 consecutive hot days, but had a cooler day to recover before harvest. The fruit analysis figures show a slight difference to the very good 2016. Higher Baume (Baume is a measurement of the concentration of sugars in grapes) to give more fruit intensity, marginally lower pH, which we want for taste, and slightly higher Total Acid. All this indicates that we can make a zestier but more delicate wine with lower residual sugar than the 2016 – that is our aim.
Benjamin Semillon: Harvested early morning Monday 23 January, it copped 2 more consecutive hot days, but had 4 cool days to recover before harvest. The fruit analysis figures show a slight difference to the very good 2014 and 2016 Vintage. Slightly lower Baume to better retain the Semillon citrus & lime characteristic, marginally lower pH, which we want for taste, and slightly higher Total Acid. All this indicates that we will achieve our aim of pleasing our existing followers but also attracting new Semillon lovers.
Jessica Verdelho: The sugar level is identical to the 2016 vintage, and slightly lower acids, which can be adjusted. Two hot days before picking would have lowered the sugar levels, but not the flavours, so the expectation is to make a very similar wine to the 2016 at lower residual sugar because of more intense flavours.
WHAT IS COMING IN FEBRUARY?
We expect the Wilhelm Shiraz (and Veronica Rose) from the Hunter, Stephanie Pinot Gris and Sarah Elizabeth Chardonnay from Orange to come in this month
The other 6 wines all look on course for March.
"... Many of the wines are named after children of the Gartelmann family which to us highlights the locally family owned business element. A nice touch given the influx of larger overseas companies now buying many of the surrounding vineyards...."
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The 2016 harvest was nail biting stuff with 40% of the annual rainfall falling just eight days before harvest. However, I am pleased to report that apart from the 2016 Chardonnay, all our 2016 white wines are safely in the bottle and the quality is superb...
Gartelmann Wines has released two new vintage wines from its NSW Central Ranges portfolio; the 2013 Gartelmann ‘Jesse’ Shiraz ($30) and their Bordeaux blend, the 2013 Gartelmann ‘Phillip Alexander’ ($25). Both wines are from NSW’s Mudgee region.
Vignerons, Jorg and Jan Gartelmann have been traversing the NSW Central Ranges over the past few years, discovering vineyards and growers that have a similar approach to wine growing. We were looking for small, like-minded growers with varieties that are eminently suited to their particular region.
The 2013 Gartelmann ‘Phillip Alexander’ is a blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot. The grapes are from a vineyard situated at Rylstone, a sub region of Mudgee, at an elevation of 630 metres.
This is a fantastic vineyard. It is located on a sloping block with reddish-brown clay loam mixed with sandstone and pebbles. This provides perfect drainage and mineral input for the vines. The elevation ensures a slightly cooler growing season to Mudgee, which works well for these varieties.
The 2013 Gartelmann ‘Jesse’ Shiraz is from well established, 68 year-old vineyards in the traditional growing region of Mudgee. Due to the relative proximity between Mudgee and its coastal neighbour Hunter Valley, their Shiraz are often compared. Mudgee’s inland climate is drier and tends to producer riper flavoured shiraz, whilst the elevation gives the wines higher acidity than our Hunter versions.
As a rule, Mudgee experiences less rainfall and humidity than the Hunter Valley. The nights are cooler and there are more instances of spring frosts, however there are a higher number of sunshine hours. Vintage is usually around four weeks or so later.
The Mudgee Shiraz was matured in new and one to three year-old puncheons and hogsheads for 18 months to develop structure and complexity to match the tannins and acidity whilst allowing the regional fruit to shine.
Gartelmann Wines has continued its success at the Orange Wine Show, being awarded the Trophy for Red Wine of the Show and Trophy for the Best Shiraz for its 2015 Gartelmann ‘Diedrich’ Shiraz.
The 2015 Gartelmann ‘Diedrich’ Shiraz is one of Jorg and Jan Gartelmann’s flagship wines, and testament to their decision to source fruit from the cool climate region of Orange.
We have been excited by the quality of fruit coming from our Orange region growers. Our 2014 Gartelmann ‘Joey’ Merlot was awarded at the previous Orange Wine Show, and this is gave us confidence to broaden our range of Orange wines.
The Gartelmann range now comprises three Shiraz including a Hunter Valley Shiraz, Mudgee and the awarding winning Orange Region Gartelmann ‘Diedrich’ Shiraz.
We have three completely different styles of Shiraz, all from within the NSW region. This shows the diversity of regions, from the warmer Mediterranean influenced Hunter Region through a warmer, earthier Mudgee style to the heights of Orange where the wines are spicier and more elegant.
The Gartelmann ‘Diedrich’ Shiraz is now being made from the Orange Wine Region, with plans in place for a new Gartelmann ‘Wilhelm’ Shiraz from renowned older vines of the Hunter Valley.
The 2015 Gartelmann ‘Diedrich’ Shiraz will be cellared and general release is approx. September 2017.
2015 Gartelmann ‘Diedrich’ Shiraz (Orange Wine Region)
The 2016 Gartelmann 'Benjamin' Semillon has continued its golden journey receiving the Top Gold in its category at the recent 2016 NSW Small Winemakers Wine Show.
The judges commented; "A relativey strong class considering the challenging season, with two outstanding young Semillons..."
For more on this Wine Show, visit their website here.
Gartelmann Wines has released two new wines made from fruit grown in the cool climate of Orange. The new releases comprise the 2016 Gartelmann ‘Stephanie’ Pinot Gris ($25) and the trophy winning 2014 Gartelmann ‘Joey’ Merlot ($25).
Gartelmann Wines was established by Jan and Jorg Gartelmann in the Hunter Valley’s Lovedale region in 1995. Over the past few years Jorg and Jan have experimented with grapes from regions further afield.
We have developed great relationships with a number of growers in Mudgee and the higher elevations of Orange. Whilst we are firmly entrenched in the Hunter Valley, we wanted to extend our wine styles with varieties that are making a mark in their respective regions.”
The 2014 Gartelmann ‘Joey’ Merlot gained recognition at the 2015 Orange Wine Show where it was awarded the 2015 Trophy for the Best Merlot of the Show.
We were extremely proud to be awarded this trophy. The wine subsequently won the ‘People’s Choice Award for the Most Popular Wine in the Show’. Considering there were almost 300 wines in the show, we were humbled that our Merlot was given this honour.
It is our first Merlot made from Orange fruit. We started harvesting and then the rain started; picking stopped, but luckily so did the rain. Keen to press on, we used an empty spray cart to blow dry the vineyard and allowing us to get back into it.”
The 2014 Merlot was then matured for 14 months in a combination of new French oak puncheons (25%) and one to three year old puncheons and hogsheads prior to bottling.
The 2016 Gartelmann ‘Stephanie’ Pinot Gris, named after Jan and Jorg’s daughter, is the first release of this variety for Gartelmann. The grapes are from the southern foothills of Mount Canobolas at an elevation of around 675 metres. We wanted to make a Pinot Gris that showed good varietal character with some palate weight and gentle acidity.
Our winemaker Liz Jackson did a fabulous job with these two wines. We have discovered some wonderful vineyards and grape growers in Orange, with the new wines adding significantly to our range of NSW Central Ranges wines.
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