A beaut blend of Grenache and Shiraz, unfiltered unfined and no S02. Red berries, cherries, red apple with a lovely herbal lift. Could be chilled if that's your style.
who – James & Sophie Erskine (owners/winemakers), Fiona Wood (farmer)
where – Farm and winery in Lenswood, Adelaide Hills, Australia
vineyards – fruit sourced from organically farmed vineyards in McLaren Vale and Clarendon. Vines dating back to the 1940s.
winemaking – preservative/additive free for all wines.
labor practices – from James: Every year we are assessed by NASAA our certifying agency for organic farming - in the certifying process we must also demonstrate social justice pracitices or no certification is issued.
Regarding contractors we work with, Fiona now manages all the vineyard work and employs the same contract team for all vineyard management which Fiona or the vineyard owners pay for. We have worked with this team now for 6 years. We employ the same team to help with all the picking. Pricing is negotiated for picking by me and the team boss for every block every year with a base rate agreed upon that satisfies their needs. The harder the picking the higher the renumeration per pick. The team owners pay their pickers per bucket of fruit picked. The pickers are always included in the discussion regarding base price every year and the price per tonne paid.
Additionally, we for the farm and winery we have one full time employee. Over grape harvest we have one, locally living casual employee.
We regularly have WorkingOnOrganicFarms (WOOFers) staying with us who assist both at the farm and winery.
farm notes – from James: After 2 years of researching we have set out a biological farming system from which we can evolve. The system can be broken down to above and below ground.
Above ground both cherries and grapes are being sprayed with aerated compost tea whis is delivered to us by our friend and consultant Natalya who studies under Dr Elaine Ingham from Permaculture USA / Soil Food Web institute. We get our compost for the compost tea sprays from Nat because she is a whizz at building Fungi rich (rather than bacteria rich) composts. When we spray out our compost tea it has usually been brewing for between 18-24 hours and is watched to make sure the brew is building life and especially fungi. This is then sprayed immediately out over the farm and the leaves of the vines and cherries. The idea here is that we are increasing the biome on the leaf area. Traditional organic systems work with sulfur and copper to kill off any fungi/mildews that may attack the leaves. The sulfur and or copper is sprayed roughly every 10 days to cover and protect any new growth. The compost tea hopes to cover the leaf with living organisms so that we can keep building the leaf/plant and soil biome so that when mildew conditions arise (powdery and downy mildew) there are already other fungi and life occupying the spaces where mildew could other wise attack = just think of it like your gut and gut health.
Below ground we are introducing up to 26 different cover/co crops that exist within the orchards/vineyards. Here there is some recent science which shows once you reach a certain tipping point over e.g. 8 different plants working in the same area you get gene activation of proteins which increase both water use efficiency and disease resistance. So, the usually organic paradigm is to remove as much of the competing/weed growth around the vines/cherries - we are going to try working with a more symbiotic system - wish the plants luck xx
- Tess Bryant Selections
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