The Super-what I hear you say? The Super-Duper – it is your chance to experience two new wines made in very limited volumes and we think they are pretty... well, super-duper!
Prior to the 2012 vintage we undertook a chardonnay benchmark tasting at the winery and included some of the country’s leading chardonnay producers. We included our MCC Chardonnay. We thought it stood up pretty well but were also inspired to really push ourselves to see if we could make a wine that really stood proud amongst the greatest chardonnays in Australia.
So we identified particular growers and particular parcels of fruit from those growers and ordered barrels specifically for the wine to be fermented and matured in and embarked on a new project which we always casually referred to as the super-duper chardonnay because we had always said “let’s make a super-duper chardonnay”. It was a very exciting and creative project to work on and watch evolve.
The wine was eventually bottled and we had to order labels but we needed a name. We had many discussions and much pondering and significant doubt but in the end we decided to stick with super-duper. It explains perfectly what we were trying to achieve and the name had been attached to the wine from the very beginning. We always assumed that it would polarise people’s opinion. They were either going to see the humour in it and love it or think it’s a silly name for an expensive wine. And that’s exactly how it turned out to be when we launched the Printhie 2012 Super-Duper Chardonnay at a dinner at Lolli Redini during Orange F.O.O.D Week.
If there was consensus on anything during that dinner was that the quality of the wine was undeniable. So we are happy to live with divided opinion about the Super-Duper name if the wine itself is so enthusiastically embraced and enjoyed by wine drinkers.
And yes, there is another Super-Duper wine to partner the chardonnay – it’s the Printhie 2012 Super-Duper Syrah. This wine had a completely different genesis to the chardonnay. We undertook a pruning trial in the shiraz vineyard and subsequently harvested those rows separately and it remained a separate batch all through its fermentation and maturation. As time passed, it become increasingly obvious that this batch had its very own character and one quite different to all the other shiraz batches. We were constantly amazed at its individuality and dare I say its ‘un-Australianness’. As a result, we decided it was far too interesting to just blend away into a bigger batch so we decided to bottle it separately and thought it would make a terrific partner to the chardonnay.
The 2012 Super-Duper Syrah is a very different expression of shiraz, especially in the Australian context, but even so for the local regional context. It is very much less-is-more, less upfront impact, more delicacy, more transparency, more detail, more complexity. It is not a blockbuster wine with super ripe fruit and heaps of expensive oak. It is a very honest expression of shiraz grown in one particular patch of our vineyard.
There are Super-Dupers from the 2013 vintage and I expect there will be from the 2014 vintage as well. The premise of the chardonnay remains the same but the accidental beginnings of the Syrah have taken a more deliberate path of evolution to mirror the chardonnay – the premise of pushing our creativity and imagination to produce a wine that excites and pleases.