Giant Steps is a privately owned, estate-based, Yarra Valley grower and winemaker that has forged a reputation for delivering some of Australia’s most consistent, over-performing, varietal wines. The Giant Steps Single Vineyard range is produced from the most site-expressive fruit from the best vineyards, in great years. Their aim is to express in each wine the character of the site, grape and vintage, and this they achieve by meticulous work in the vineyard and minimum intervention in the winery. Head winemaker Steve Flamsteed and his team are making some of the best wines in Australia from these sites.
Located on the steep north facing slopes of the Warramate Ranges, alongside the vineyards of Yarra Yering and Coldstream Hills, the Sexton vineyard is exposed and demanding. Being well up the slopes between 130 and 210 metres, topsoil is thin and root systems have established themselves in shallow gravelly loams above a tough rocky clay base. Vigour and bunch yields set naturally low in this environment, facilitating a low intervention approach to what is otherwise hand tended viticulture. Biodynamic vineyard management principles are being introduced with the purpose of further distinguishing the site and improving grape and wine quality.
2013 was an exciting vintage in the Yarra. The entire vintage lasted a record 35 days. Excellent weather at flowering led into cool, mild growing conditions, with an accelerated final stage of ripening due to some warm nights. The estate vineyards produced small crops with intense flavour and solid natural acidity. The resulting wines are all very strong in primary fruit and possess a generosity and mouth feel not seen since 2010.
45% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot, 20% Petit Verdot.
Fruit was hand picked, destemmed and crushed to small open fermenters. An eight-day, warm ferment followed. Fruit was then hand plunged twice daily and underwent a daily rack-and-return (delestage) for two weeks. The pomace cap was submerged for two to three weeks to integrate tannins. The wine was racked off its gross lees to 225-litre French oak barriques for malolactic fermentation. 40% of the barrels were new, with the remainder second- and third-use. After 15 months, the wine was gravity bottled (on the 1st of August 2014).
Bright, deep crimson; a powerful, intense yet perfectly balanced array of black, blue and red berry fruits interwoven with touches of vanilla, cedar and graphite. A medium to full-bodied wine densely packed with black fruit and spice, with firm, grainy tannins and just enough acid to lift the long finish.