Henschke Hill of Grace 2013

Henschke Eden Valley Hill Of Grace Shiraz

Vineyard: Over 165 years ago, Johann Christian Henschke came from Silesia to settle and build his farm in the Eden Valley region. By the time third-generation Paul Alfred Henschke took over the reins in 1914, the now famed Hill of Grace wines were more than 50 years old.

Planted around the 1860s by ancestor, Nicolaus Stanitski, in rich alluvial soil, in a shallow fertile valley just north of the winery. The red-brown earth grading to deep silty loam has excellent moisture holding capacity for these dry grown vines, which sit at an altitude of 400m, with an average rainfall of 520mm.

Hill of Grace is a unique defined, historic, single vineyard that lies opposite a beautiful old Lutheran church, which is named after a picturesque region in Selesia known as Gnadenberg, meaning “Hill of Grace”. Cyril Henschke made the first single vineyard Shiraz wine from this vineyard in 1958.

Season: The lead-up to vintage saw an early onset of summer, with occasional thunder-storms andfour heat spikes into the high 40s, through summer. Fortunately 16ml of rain came, the first rain for six months which helped dry-grown vines through to maturity. Cool drizzly weather at the end of March nearly brought the harvest to a halt but a return to an Indian summer gave varieties a chance to develop quality fruit.

Wine making: Handpicked and vinified in traditional open top fermenters. Matured in 56% new and 44% seasoned (86% French and 14% American) hogsheads for 18 months prior to blending the separate parcels from the vineyard and bottling.

Appearance:  Deep crimson with violet hues.

Aroma/Bouquet: Captivating blackberry and mulberry aromatics lead to an alluring exotic five spice, star anise and black peppercorn, with herbaceous notes of thyme and dried basil, supported by slight gamey hints.

Palate: The palate has incredible length and purity, with a focused core of blackberry and plum fruit, wrapped by beautiful integrated layers of silky tannins, which linger endlessly with flavours of sage leaf and blackcurrant skin.

Food Pairing: Hutton Vale rack of Lamb with Maggie Beer Vinocotto red wine jus.

Alcohol: 14.5%

pH: 3.56

Acidity: 5.92/L

Residual Sugar: NA

Production: NA

Cellar potential: 30+ years

Wine maker: Stephen Henschke

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Large bottle henshcke hill of grace (vino lok) 2009 copy

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The Henschke family has been making wine since Johann Christian Henschke planted a small vineyard on his diverse farming property at Keyneton in 1862. He was one of many Silesians who had fled their homeland in search of religious freedom, and he arrived from Kutschlau in 1841. The wine was initially intended for consumption by family and friends, but with the first commercial release in 1868, believed to be principally riesling and shiraz, the wheels were set in motion for greater things to come.