CASTAGNA 2014 GENESIS SYRAH
Aromatically it has notes of briar, peat, liquorice and aniseed – red and black fruits are the core, with vibrant floral tones that are totally evolving. On the palate there are the now customary powdery velvet tannins with a wonderful firm structure – managing to deliver a wine that is both gentle and complex.
CASTAGNA 2009 GENESIS SYRAH (500ml)
The nose is deep and compelling; black, brooding, with hints of sweet, ripe, cherry-to-plum fruit, then sweet leather – old leather, with a lick of boot polish that smells both intriguing and inviting. Then come notes of cracked black pepper and dried thyme, with just a touch of star anise. The palate is supple, earthen, rich and round with a fine dry spice – layers of black cherries, with an overlay of wild herbs giving a spicy lift to the wine. Mouth-filling, vibrant, spicy and alive, yet still long, dry, and savoury. A complex wine that lifts the bar another notch in the Genesis story. Spicy, juicy, savoury and yet complex, perhaps the most lush and approachable of all Genesis wines to date.
CASTAGNA 2014 LA CHIAVE
On the nose it speaks of blackberries, raspberries and sour cherries and perhaps just a hint of chocolate. In the mouth there are lovely cedar tannins, a touch of caramelised apple with the fine French oak giving it gentle spiciness. Quite delicious.
CASTAGNA 2014 UN SEGRETO
With aromas of fresh earth and cigar box the sour cherry of the Sangiovese gives this wine energy and poise. The palate speaks of dark beets, plums and sour cherries, but with a lightness of touch. I always find this blend is much more than the sum of its parts; it is both individual and alive.
2014 ADAM’S RIB THE RED
The Adams Rib blend of Nebbiolo with Shiraz is now well-established and the wines get better every year. The Nebbiolo gives the wine tension and structure with the Shiraz giving it a lovely roundness. The nose speaks of worn leather, freshly turned earth, some tar and rose petal, and just a hint of Chinese five spice. In the mouth there are lovely floral hints and suggestions of raspberry cherry and anise – quite compelling.
CASTAGNA 2008 SPARKLING GENESIS SYRAH
Deep garnet in colour, this wine has a bouquet that is totally charming and engulfs you: sandalwood, pepper, a touch of apricot, sexy blackberries and dark cherries mixed with graphite, and as it opens up briary notes and black fruit that speak of wonderful extract, and a sense of brooding blackness. The bead is fine, persistent and elegant. It is rich and yet savoury, its texture augmented by fine drying tannins and notes of exotic wood spice. Both acid and dosage counter-balance the fruit and tannin to deliver a long savoury finish with wonderful fruit sweetness, so it is neither sweet nor cloying to one’s palate with a spicy complexity and structured elegance, but always with ripe fruit appeal.
CASTAGNA 2007 SAUVAGE
This wine is a wonderful introduction to the wines of Castagna. Showing an array of rich, ripe, plumy flavours, black berries and savoury flashes of smoky bacon, it is a vineyard blend of Shiraz, Viognier and Sangiovese. The wine combines a powerful earthiness with tones of saddle leather, dried herbs and violets – it speaks powerfully of the land from whence it came. The fruit is rich plum with charry overtones, the palate is dominated by sweet black fruit, and, as always in Castagna, very fine grain tannins.
This wine needed time in glass and has been held in cool storage for the last six years. It was held back so we would have something to release instead of the 2011 vintage. I am delighted by its development. The vineyard characters are now very evident – black cherry, liquorice and floral notes of damp roses now coming to the fore – good wine always tells its own story in its own time. On the palate the impact is of lush, ripe, black berries with masses of silky fine tannins. It has evolving into a wine that delivers warmth and assurance which will provide drinking pleasure over the next 6 to 10 years. I’m very proud of it.
CASTAGNA 2015 ALLEGRO
The bouquet is of savoury dried herbs formed around a core of red cherry fruit – with a hint of honey, quite lifted with some earthy notes which move in and out of the bouquet. The palate is perfectly balanced, it speaks of red cherry and anise – ripe and textural with just a hint of tannin, leaving you with a satisfying sensation of refreshing summer fruit infused with spices and herbs. A wine to be enjoyed year round, not just in summer.
CASTAGNA 2010 SPARKLING ALLEGRO
A sparkling Shiraz rosé which rested on lees for four years before disgorgement and with a minimal dosage of only one gram. It smells of strawberries and cherries but with an underlying sense of savoury dried herbs. In the mouth it is both ripe and textural with the merest hint of tannin. Very much a wine for all seasons which can be enjoyed all year round not only in summer.
CASTAGNA AQUA SANTA
Light amber in colour, with a nose of dried mangos, candied mandarin peel, and vanilla. On the pallet it is rich and delicious with beautiful fresh acidity. It has notes of dried tropical fruits, candied oranges and pineapple, and then all at once, a deep, rumbling vanilla coffee flavour on the finish that goes on for ever.
CASTAGNA GROWERS’ SELECTION 2015 BEECHWORTH ROUSSANNE
To the eye, it is straw gold with the slightest tinge of green. The nose is lush and spicy; baked peach, honey blossom, and quince with a suggestion of hazel and cashew nuts so typical of Roussanne. The palate is rich, round and complex but still subtle with the suggestions of stewed quince, baked peach with honey and cinnamon. It has a long finish with a touch of apricot, and a texture that is both creamy and mouth-filling
CASTAGNA GROWERS’ SELECTION 2014 HARLEQUIN
Roussanne, Sauvignon Blanc and Sémillon, fermented on skins for 30 days giving it palate weight and an unusual but delicious mouthfeel. It speaks of honey, fresh stone fruits and spice – a grown-up amber wine designed to be consumed at cellar temperature with food quite compelling.
CASTAGNA CLASSIC DRY VERMOUTH
This is an utterly delicious aperitif, based on our Shiraz Rosé; infused with more than 30 botanicals it can be drunk on its own to stimulate the appetite, with a sliver of orange peel, or mixed half and half with a good quality gin and again a sliver of orange peel, to make a very wet martini. Moreish to say the least.
CASTAGNA 2013 GENESIS SYRAH
The colour is of dark plum with crimson edges. The nose is of cassis and spice with hints of star anise, sweet black and red berries and tight grain French oak. The palate speaks of the forest floor and of mushrooms with hints of truffle and lovely notes of cedary wood. It has a supple mid-palate with fine powdery tannins on the finish. A focused wine with hints of violets and black pepper which will need time to show at its best.
CASTAGNA 2012 GENESIS SYRAH
A cool, sodden end to summer extended the growing season: our spirits rather than dampened, were lifted. Beautiful, balanced fruit with lower baumes were delivered into the winery. You could almost see the vines lift and heave a sigh of relief: rainfall – fresh, cooling and life-giving water from the heavens invigorated the vines and gave them the strength to bring the fruit to a slow and complete level of ripeness without production of excess sugar. As the wine developed in barrel we realised that this was going to be one of those rare and breathtaking wines.
A wine of quiet reserve and sophistication that will age gracefully over the next twenty years and beyond. A dark brooding hue of black and magenta; charcuterie, cracked black pepper, blood plums, a subtle hint of apricot mingles with sandalwood, cinnamon and clove – a bouquet that provides a rainbow of sensory aromas. The palate is elegant, cool and refreshing with great depth and dimension. Black fruits, ripe but not sweet, are seasoned perfectly by the fine tannins and acid structure. Here the palate mirrors the bouquet! This is a wine that will, in time, emerge into an hedonistic showcase of the glory of Beechworth Shiraz grown on granite, clay soils.
CASTAGNA 2010 GENESIS SYRAH
After the hard work of the years 2007 to 2009 it was so utterly refreshing to have fruit that behaved in a way that I have come to expect from our vineyard; so well in fact that this wine, in essence, made itself. The nose opens with a compote of dark plums, a whiff of earth – turned sods in the early morning, dried herbs -sage, oregano, thyme and finally a crack of black pepper. On the palate it adds hints of raspberries with subtle notes of a spice; cedar, nutmeg and cinnamon, all drawn together by notes of freshly turned earth and long very fine tannins. As it opens in the glass the long palate extends and tightens, to a peppery graphite like finish that balances out the beautifully ripe but not sweet fruit. Just gorgeous.
CASTAGNA 2013 LA CHIAVE
The nose is of blackberries, raspberry, sour black cherries with notes of chocolate and just a hint of truffle. In the mouth there are lovely cedary tannins with beautiful fruit which speaks of bright raspberries slightly caramelised apple and chocolate. It has a lovely mid-palate and a long savoury finish which seems to go on forever.
CASTAGNA 2013 UN SEGRETO
Aromatically complex with aromas of freshly turned earth, cigar box and sour cherry linked by lovely floral notes. The palate is vibrant and fresh with subtle notes of fine grained oak framed by fine powdery tannins, which gives the wine a textural richness. Cinnamon, nutmeg, star anise and cardamom add complexity. Dry and savoury without any hint of sweetness bringing together the best of both varieties.
CASTAGNA 2012 UN SEGRETO
To make great Sangiovese you must listen to its voice. This year, as in 2005, I decided that the blend would make the better wine so have used all of our Sangiovese in Un Segreto. Crimson to traditional blood magenta in colour; it has a refined aroma both mysterious and beguiling: plums, black pepper, leather polish applied satisfyingly to the favourite old armchair worn down by decades of use. On the palate black cherries ripe and firm with sweet wafts of damp rose petals; a glorious attack of silky plum fruit with exotic spices and a fine tannin underbelly freshened by balanced acidity. Delicious.
CASTAGNA 2016 EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL
Our wine continues on its journey of recognition world-wide – the maxim that ‘Before a wine can be great, it must first be true’ seems, at last, to be embraced and understood by many wine reviewers and well as the general wine buying public.
We export to about a dozen countries, our wine being available in fine restaurants all over the world which gives us great pride. Export to France has been a long time coming so it gives me enormous pleasure to know that our wines are now available at Lavinia in the Boulevard de la Madeleine in Paris – surely the world’s best wine shop – truly Daniel in the Lion’s den!
Genesis has been added to Langton’s Classification of Australian Wine – Langton’s Classification is the accepted indicator of Australian Classed growths and is regarded as the definitive indicator of the top Australian wines.
On the European front, the English Financial Times, arguably the world’s most prestigious newspaper, did a story on Australian wine and nominated what they considered to be the twelve best Australian winemakers – Julian Castagna was on that list, an honour, indeed.
The continuing and increasing problems with natural cork have sparked a huge debate, especially in the New World, on finding appropriate, alternative closures for wine and there is little doubt that screw caps seem to be becoming the closure of choice.
I am not convinced that the emotional side of drinking fine wine is satisfied by bottles sealed with screw caps; I am not convinced that it’s best for the wine in the long run. Fine wines need to age and develop in the bottle over time – part of this process is a very small ingress of oxygen through the cork allowing the wine to age successfully. Perfect gas barriers don’t allow this to happen and the wines will age in atypical ways. I am also not convinced that the majority of our customers want fine wine bottles sealed with screw caps, I certainly don’t. What I want and what I think all of our customers want is a wine to be as the winemaker intended when they come to drink it.
Those of you who have bought wine from us will have noticed that all Castagna wine is sealed with Diam. Diam is a technical cork. Natural cork is reduced to powder then washed with super critical Carbon Dioxide – a process which removes all measurable levels of releasable TCA from this raw cork material. This process has undergone many tests by independent organisations using laboratory equipment which can detect TCA at less than 0.5 parts per trillion. The powder is then reconstituted using the same polymer that contact lenses are made from. So the guarantee is100% TCA free – a near-perfect seal with virtually no random cork oxidation, which in itself has proven almost as big a problem as TCA.
To place an order with Castagna, please fill out our online order form or download our interactive orderform. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader if you don’t already have it, It is available free from Adobe.