Spinifex Bête Noir 2018
A Bête Noir is the bane of one’s existence, here referring to the multitude of small parcels that go into this blend. Pete Schell’s 2018 Bête is a blend of 70% old-vine Barossa Shiraz and 30% Eden Valley Shiraz sourced from vines located across a variety of Barossa’s sub-regions, with the eastern foothills, Moppa, Moculta, and the Eden Valley all contributing. Vineyard age ranges between 25 and 120 years, with “60 years being a fair average across the blend,” according to Schell. All fruit is hand-harvested. The proportion of whole clusters varied from “everything to nothing” depending on the vineyard, with roughly 35% in the final blended cuvée. Vinified with indigenous yeast fermentation, élevage on lees in new (25%) and seasoned French oak barrels ranging in capacity from 225-litre to 2,500-litre for 20 months prior to bottling without filtration.