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Of particular importance to Shadowfax are the very close relationships with a select group of growers who provide harvests of the most intensely flavoured fruit. A prolific trophy winner, Shadowfax are a refreshing new wave, vigorously fruit driven, livelier than her Victorian siblings, characterised by slatey, flavoursome acidity, a touch of lees complexity and judicious dryness. Shadowfax»
Clare Valley Shiraz is internationally renowned, remarkable for its spectacular complexity, elegance and poise. Bill Taylor planted Shiraz with a view to formulating the very style which has won primacy throughout the world of wine. Taylors»
Stoney Rise is all about drinkability, the creation of complex, fully approachable food friendly wines, without any excessive oak or uber ripeness. Pinot Noir goes into the oldest barrels available to soften the tannins and refine textures without overpowering the sensual fruit characters. Stoney Rise»
The inaugural release of Hanging Rock Shiraz was vintage 1987 and what an event it was, immediately claiming gold and inspiring comparisons to Grange by the industry press. From from fruit grown to the estate Athols Paddock, a complex Heathcote style, more Syrah than Shiraz, boasting several trophies and over fifty gold to its distinguished history, big, powerful and rich, yet exhibiting an elegance and finesse that's rare in Australian wine. Hanging Rock»
De Bortoli hold an extensive collection of barrel aged wines. Stocks of fortified and botrytised Semillon are drawn on from time to time to assemble into a wickedly decadent wine of rare opulence. De Bortoli»
Only the best vintages are selected for the Premium Rare Old Muscat, all releases win significant awards at major international competitions. In blending, a range of vintages are used, the older wines giving intensely concentrated luscious flavours and aged complexity and the younger wines imparting the fresh fruit character. Morris»
Take a lesson from the well versed Rosé rectors on the Cotes du Rhône and you'll be adding a measure of the arcadian Cinsault grape into your Grenache ferments, conceiving an animate and engaging ochre pink wine. There's a real affinity between the balmy maritime climes of McLaren Vale and the swarthy, effusive varietals that hail from the French south. Bondar»
Zilzie know from good Shiraz, they have grown the finest fruit for decades and now retain access to the most splendid vineyards. The quality of their winemaking has claimed thirty trophies since they embarked on their own label. Zilzie»
Don Lewis spent thirty five years crafting the nation's most memorable vintages while at Mitchelton. Nowadays he travels to Spain each year where he makes wine for Merum Priorati, returning to Australia just in time for vintage. Tar Roses»
An eminent Cabernet wine which can lay claim to coveted accolades such as Blue Gold Sydney International and Gold Concours Mondial de Bruxelles. Jacobs Creek retain South Australia's finest vineyards and aim to improve the quality of wine every year. Jacobs Creek»
Mandoon are a Swan Valley operation of great provenance, their homestead vineyard being an ancient block established on the first rural grant in Western Australia, circa 1929 at a property named Sandalford. Always on the lookout for exceptional parcels of fruit, the highly decorated Mandoon team have focused on a northern block of Research Station Vineyard in Margaret River. Mandoon»
The five most most exclusive parcels of old vine Shiraz, a secret component of the Barossa's most memorable vintages, hand picked off the De Fazio and Hillview vineyards at Belvidere and Moppa. Batches are crushed into traditional open top fermenters for a week of pumpovers, gently pressed into an extravagantly high proportion of new French oak hogsheads for two years maturation, followed by the final assemblage, unfiltered and unfined. Pirathon»
Passing Clouds
Passing Clouds Graemes Blend $371.88/Case of 12
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Currently out of stock
Cabernet Sauvignon Shiraz by Passing Clouds of Bendigo. Rich complex aromas of blackberry, blackcurrant and spice follow through onto the palate, lined by a veneer of gentle oak. Graeme's Blend is the Passing Cloud flagship. Passing Clouds is a small hands on operation employing traditional techniques. A superb balance of tannin and acidity complemented by lingering fruit, beautifully balanced on a length of fine chalky tannins.
FromPassing Clouds
VarietalCabernet Sauvignon Shiraz
RegionBendigo / Victoria

Passing Clouds

http://www.passingclouds.com.au/ - Passing Clouds - Tasting Notes On Australian & New Zealand wines
Passing Clouds is a small hands on operation using traditional winemaking techniques, sheltered by hills of ironbark forest, an ideal growing climate for premium red wine

The story begins in 1973 when Graeme Leith and Sue Mackinnon great friends and partners decided that they wanted even more challenges in life than were possible for them in their careers as electrical contractor and journalist; Graeme was the electrical contractor. They wanted to brave the elements, face the challenges of the land, and like so many before them pursue the holy grail of the best wine in the world.

http://www.passingclouds.com.au/ - Passing Clouds - Tasting Notes On Australian & New Zealand wines

Working on the principle that enthusiasm triumphs over professionalism, the first vines were planted at Kingower by Sue Mackinnon, Graeme Leith, Anne and David Brown (who then wisely took up cheese making) in November 1973 by the headlights of the van from which they had driven from Melbourne after work. They didn’t want it to be dependent on pesticides or insecticides so they chose a site in a dry area north west of Bendigo on old gold diggings, where the soil had been dug over a hundred and twenty years before by goldminers.

They laid out the wires, measured the distance between the vines, dug the holes with shovels and planted 150 vines, initially shiraz and cabernet sauvignon to make a classic Aussie blend. There were also riesling vines planted, that Tom Lazar had left over from his last plantings at Virgin Hills, and which he had kindly donated. They then had some supper and drove back to Melbourne. They were younger, then.

After several years of nurturing their plantings, they experienced the first real Passing Clouds vintage, and released their inaugural wine. They were successful, and the first wine they showed at the Melbourne Wine Show, the 1982 shiraz cabernet won gold. Since then the vineyards produce has won numerous medals for magnificent wines, presently including not only the predominant Graeme’s Blend shiraz cabernet, but The Angel, a cabernet sauvignon merlot cab franc, some spectacular shirazes, and over the last few years the pinot noir made from Coldstream grapes.

http://www.passingclouds.com.au/ - Passing Clouds - Tasting Notes On Australian & New Zealand wines

White wines are made too, but Passing Clouds is famous for its reds, reds of great character, individuality and superb quality. As one wine writer said "I have a lot of sample bottles on my table at the end of the day, but whenever there’s Passing Clouds, it’s the one we drink with dinner!"

The first Passing Clouds, a glorious concentrated red had too little chemical input, no sulphur was added as a preservative and the wine had a very short life span. From then on all wines have had minimal sulphur additions to keep them alive and well, as Winemaker Graeme Leith accepted that the Romans had it right two thousand years ago when they burned sulphur in their amphorae. Unirrigated, ripe fruit, traditional methods of hand plunging in small fermenters and hand presses cranking down the cake late into the night was the formula for the next twenty years and many superb wines were produced.

Some more sophisticated wine making equipment has been added over the last ten years or so, including an air bag press. Today's Passing Clouds are as good or better than the Gold winning 1982 shiraz cabernet. Winemaker Graeme Leith has always enjoyed the challenge of different styles, different varieties. Passing Clouds now releases The Angel cabernet, three different shirazes, cabernet franc, grenache, Graeme’s Blend shiraz cabernet, chardonnay and sauvignon blanc and lately the highly regarded pinot noir, crafted from Coldstream fruit. The estate also makes the highly acclaimed Three Wise Men pinot at Kingower with fruit transported from Narre Warren East.

Generally speaking the best wines over the years have been made in dry seasons, the wetter seasons have produced weedier wines. All of the Passing Clouds reds are of exemplary quality and have the power to age gracefully, plus something special no other Bendigo district wines seem to have. According to many, what distinguishes Passing Clouds from other Bendigo wines, is a fleshy full bodied weight, an opulence and plushness that makes many other Bendigo reds seem skeletal by comparison.

http://www.passingclouds.com.au/ - Passing Clouds - Tasting Notes On Australian & New Zealand wines

Graeme sometimes says that making wine is not all that dissimilar to making a fruit cake, good ingredients, a guiding hand, and get the timing right! He also says that making wine is 20% winemaking and 80% cleaning up. Graeme Leith has passed the winemaking baton onto his son Cameron, and everyone expects the quality and uniqueness of Passing Clouds to be suitably nurtured and improved upon.

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