To produce the Cabernet Sauvignon “Pride of the Fleurieu” Dandelion Vineyard, selected bunches were hand picked by family and friends in the second week of March and gently crushed into open-top fermenters. After 14 days of fermentation the wine was basket pressed into predominately older French oak barriques for 18 months’ maturation, then bottled without filtration or fining to capture the essence of the vineyard.
With a prime position overlooking the Finniss River wetlands, Stranger’s Reach vineyard is cooled by the maritime influence of the Great Southern Ocean and nearby Lake Alexandrina. Deep alluvial soils and low rainfall help the tough Cabernet vines produce rich flavours in the berries.
Dandelion Vineyards is the venture of self-titled ‘typist’ Zar Brooks and his winemaking wife Elena, with wines made from the Barossa and Eden Valleys, Fleurieu, the Adelaide Hills and McLaren Vale. Nick Stock, one of Australia’s leading journalists, has described Dandelion as follows: “Brooks has teamed up with his winemaking wife Elena, a woman whose talents are outweighed only by her tolerance, in an exciting new venture called Dandelion Vineyards. The approach is remarkably simple and sees Elena making wine from a suite of beautiful old vineyards across that blessed curve that runs from the Barossa, up through the Eden Valley and Adelaide Hills and down into McLaren Vale.”