Bondar Rayner Vineyard Grenache 2018
Bondar’s flagship release hails from a 0.7-hectare block of old vines in the Rayner vineyard planted in 1970. This parcel has sandy soils over yellow clay; a soil type that brings finesse while the low yields bring intensity. “I really want the Rayner Grenache to be a brighter, prettier expression of the variety,” says Andre Bondar. To achieve this the fruit is picked at just the right point, not too late, in order to capture the vivid red fruit notes and bright acidity that Bondar is after. As 2018 was a more generous year, Bondar ended up using more whole-bunches than usual (around 20%) and a larger amount of wine was aged in old oak hogsheads than previous years (around two thirds) with the balance in stainless and ceramic vessels. The result is a wine of elegant freshness—McLaren Vale Grenache in its purest, more delicious guise.
“Bondar's aim is to produce bright, pretty grenache, largely by earlier picking - which was easy in the cool '17 vintage, but more difficult in '18. A raspberry, cherry-accented bouquet, the palate following suit. Its overall freshness is exceptional.”96 PointsThe Australian
“Spicy, bright, raspberry, potpourri and Turkish Delight. Medium-bodied, very fresh and spritely, crisp and sweet raspberry and cranberry, clean acidity and a light rasp of tannin, garden herbs and a juicy finish of excellent length. Brightness and energy here, and while it’s perhaps a bit too perky now, is sure to settle and improve with some bottle age.”94 PointsThe Wine Front