Tuesday, April 28, 2015

A Festival Treat from Kaesler

1907.  2012 Kaesler - Stonehorse GMS (Barossa Valley - Australia)

So, I find myself running into just a tiny, little problem nowadays. We don't exactly have any room in the cellar (such as our cellar is - a couple wine fridges, a closet, a spare bathroom tub and a stairwell) for new acquisitions. And, as much as I try to rein my buying habits and Boo tries to tighten the "No Buy Leash," there are always going to be occasions where I have no choice but to buy a new bottle or two. The annual Vancouver International Wine Festival is one such occasion.

As noted earlier in this blog, the theme region at this year's Festival was Australia and the Festival always has a number of wines available that aren't otherwise available in our market. As regular readers of the blog know, I readily admit that I have a jones for Aussie wines. So, needless to say, I didn't make things any easier on myself for space at home.

Since I didn't exactly have a spot for this bottle, I just decided to pull the cork - even though we have other bottles that likely should have been opened first.

I don't know much about Kaesler and their wines but I do recognize them from a couple of attendances at the Festival over the years. The vineyards and winery were founded by the Kaesler family in the 1890's and they operated the winery until 1986. The current owners purchased the winery in 1999 and have strived to take advantage of the premium lands and old vines ever since. The vineyards are farmed sustainably and the owners have expanded production into the Clare Valley and McLaren Vale (although those wines are released under the Clare Wine Co. and Nashwauk Vineyards banners respectively).

The Stonehorse is a classic Barossa GSM or Grenache, Shiraz, Mourvèdre blend - although this is a GMS with the Grenache playing a major (80%) role and the Mourvèdre (17%) and Shiraz (3%) balancing out the blend. The Stonehorse is from Kaesler's entry level series and is a fruit forward, easily accessible wine. The winery did, however, bring a major treat to the Festival as well - if you were lucky enough to try the wine while they still had some to pour. Kaesler's flagship wine - Old Bastard - is a single vineyard Shiraz, made from some of the vines originally planted back in the 1890's by the Kaesler family. I would have loved to add a bottle of the Old Bastard to The List but, unfortunately, the wine wasn't for sale as they only make 500 cases and it retails for over $200 a bottle when it is available. I did get my picture taken with a bottle though as I've been called a similar name often enough. In fact, an acquaintance that happened to be at the Kaesler table at the same time I was there suggested that I could make the Old Bastard my "signature" wine. I should be so lucky.

I always wonder how the wines I pick up at the Festival are going to taste when I get them home. Luckily, it's not too often that I open a bottle at home and wonder what the heck I was thinking at the Festival. There was no such concern here. The Stonehorse remained a good sip - always a good sign.

Now I guess we just need to do some drinking to free up some more space for more purchases.

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