While the Isolation Ridge Vineyard wines are the benchmark of Frankland Estate, a new release of SmithCullam breaks new ground for the winery and is regarded as a culmination of our experience and confidence both viticulturally and in winemaking. A particularly exceptional portion of Syrah from among the best parcels of Isolation Ridge was identified and bottled under the SmithCullam label as a tribute to founders Barrie Smith and Judi Cullam.
For the most part (90%) this release is crafted from the original east-west facing “Winery Block” Syrah (92%) planted on Isolation Ridge in 1988. The row orientation gives shading throughout the day resulting in finesse to the fruit profile. This is enhanced by vine age, a small addition of Viognier (5%), and a drop of Mourvèdre (3%). There is an underlying power and authenticity that comes from this, certified-organic, 30-year-old site. A lightness of touch and juiciness of fruit is retained through the 15-month maturation in 3,500-litre foudre. Isolation Ridge Vineyard sits high in the landscape on rugged ironstone soil, providing a ferrous minerality that infiltrates the wines when handled tenderly. – Hunter Smith, Frankland Estate
Deep, bright purple/red colour, the bouquet shows violets, cranberry and blueberry, with meaty spicy overtones, and a note of bunchy 'forest floor' adding extra interest. The wine is very intense, full-bodied but elegantly styled, with tremendous length and balance. Wow, this is impressive cool-climate shiraz: spicy but ripe and powerful in its relatively understated way. 97 points. Huon Hooke, The Real Review April 2021
Soft, gentle, detailed red of spice, savouriness and very pure feeling and unadorned fruit character. Has some pretty sweetness balanced nicely by fresh acidity, a good deal of fruit concentration, and a general sense of elegance comes to mind. Bright finish, a little crunchy, says hold off drinking for a year or so. Excellent wine. 94 points. Mike Bennie, The Wine Front March 2021
Wow, this is impressive cool-climate shiraz: spicy but ripe and powerful in its relatively understat..
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