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2015 vintage report for Granite Belt (Queensland)

Sirromet Wines began its 2015 vintage in early February, with the first crush being Pinot Noir and Chardonnay to be used for premium sparkling base, according to Adam Chapman, Sirromet chief winemaker.
Verdelho, Pinot Gris, Viognier and Chardonnay white varietals had been harvested in the following weeks, while the red fruit had only just began at the time of the report with Petit Verdot for the red sparkling base in the crusher.
Chapman said this year had produced a good level of complex acidities, flavours and regional characteristics which were positive signs for the winery.
“In comparison to McLaren Vale and Barossa Valley, who have already completed a very early vintage this year, we will continue to take in Shiraz, Merlot and Cabernet right up until Easter, demonstrating that elevation is more significant than latitude for determining cooler-climate ripening conditions in Australia,” Chapman said.
With the Granite Belt spreading across 50 kilometres of some of Australia’s oldest soils and rock formations, Chapman said the region has distinct characters that he expected to shine through this vintage.
“We have pristine, floral, zesty white wines and soft, elegant and spicy red wines due to the location, soil, climate and vine balance,” he said.
At 820m of elevation, Sirromet’s vineyards were planted in decomposed granite with deep clay subsoils, allowing the fruit to gain great regional flavours unique to this part of the world.
“With soil elevation being one of the most important features of world viticulture, it is nice to know that the Granite Belt will be at least 8°C cooler than Brisbane on any given day; this has to do with the rule that for every 1000ft increase in altitude there is a drop of 3°C in temperature.” Chapman said. “The average elevation of 2300ft within the Granite Belt helps dramatically with flavour development due to the cool of the late afternoon and cold nights, just like in Mendoza in Argentina, where some vineyards are grown at elevations in excess of1700m.”
Chapman said Sirromet expected to crush a total of 500 tonnes of fruit from the 2015 vintage.