Believe us if you will, but sending wines to a competition is a bit like sending horses to a race. We select our best ones, coming from a long line of winners, polish them carefully and see how they do. Well, that's most of the time.
And sometimes Aaron Mercer our senior winemaker gets adventurous. And something unexpected happens.
Last week at the 2017 Pier One NSW Wine Awards it's our 2017 'Preservative Free' Cabernet Merlot that shone brightest. It was entered in the Young Red blends category against 28 other wines and received a Gold medal.
Wines without added sulphur dioxide (SO2), or 'Preservative Free' wines have become quite popular over the past few years. But what is 'Preservative Free' wine?
Sulphur dioxide is used in the vineyard and the winery to keep the wine fresh and prevent spoilage. Even if it is not added, some SO2 is naturally created during the fermentation of the grapes. But winemakers can choose to add additional sulphur at harvest, or throughout the winemaking process. 'Preservative Free' wine requires contemporary practices in the vineyard and the winery to be made entirely without the addition of sulphur. (read more about The Sulphur Story)
Moreover, according to a recent study some consumers (around 1% according to a recent study) react to sulphur at different levels, experiencing skin irritation, migraine and/or ‘hangover’ symptoms. 1 in 100 people is quite a lot!
All in all, this extra care is definitely worth the results, with beautiful wine that tastes just as good (if not better). Our 2017 'Preservative Free' Shiraz also won Bronze medal, these two are not done surprising you!