The organic selected grapes to produce the Riesling “Polish Hill” Clare Valley Grosset were hand harvested and delivered promptly to the winery in small parcels, where they were crushed and destemmed. The fruit was then gently pressed using a pneumatic press and the free run juice was inoculated with neutral yeasts to preserve the natural expression of the vineyard in the final wine. Fermentation lasted two weeks and took place in temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks in separate batches according to clone and vine age before blending and bottling.
The eight hectare Polish Hill vineyard (ACO certified organic) is planted at 460 metres altitude in the coolest part of the Clare Valley. The low fertility soils of this hard rock site are composed of silt and shallow shales over a thin crust of clay and gravel. The vines have to work harder than those at Springvale, which is located five kilometres away, and so produce small, thick-skinned berries with bunches weighing just 100 grams.
For almost four decades, the Grosset ‘Springvale’ and ‘Polish Hill’ Rieslings have shown a consistency of style and quality that has made this one of Australia’s greatest wineries. The ‘hard rock’ blue slate of the Polish Hill site results in wines that are steely and magnificently ageworthy, while the red loam of the Springvale vineyard gives more open and easily accessible – though no less complex – wines. Such is Jeffrey Grosset’s attention to detail that he noted a small strip (22 metres wide by 300 metres long) in his Rockwood vineyard that produced more generously flavoured wines due to a different soil. Jeffrey is fanatical about the quality of his vineyards, which are certified organic and are hand tended, with a focus on sustainability to offset climate change. In the winery, each process is gentle and uncomplicated. No fining agents are used and sulphur is the only addition. By combining a disciplined approach and decades of experience, Grosset consistently achieves the purest expression of variety and place.