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Giaconda vineyard was established by Rick Kinzbrunner, a mechanical engineer who became interested in wine in the early 1970's. Rick then spent the next ten years working in the industry, travelling and following his passion for wine. After a brief stint in New Zealand, he studied at Davis University in California and worked at some of the most respected wineries in the Napa and Sonoma Valleys (namely Stag's Leap, Simi and Matanzas Creek). In Europe he worked for the Moueix group in Bordeaux, co-owner of the fabled Chateau Petrus.

After returning to Australia in 1980 to take up a position as assistant winemaker at Brown Brothers in Milawa, Rick purchased land in the nearby Beechworth wine region - at the foothills of the beautiful North-East Victorian Alps. Planting commenced in 1982 and the property is now devoted solely to Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Shiraz. A separate planting of Nebbiolo has also been established close to the Beechworth township at Red Hill. Total area under vines at the Giaconda Estate Vineyard is now 4 hectares. Annual wine production is approximately 2,500 dozen bottles.

Simply jet black in colour. Charcuterie, earth, blackberries, plums and sweet Szechuan pepper create a powerful aromatic; the palate is vibrant, subtly spiced with oak notes framed by powdery fine tannins that keep the Satsuma plum notes in check. Finishes cool, focused and vibrant with a graphite edge.

Very different to the Estate Shiraz, more spicy and savoury, more seeking to jump off the lead and head off into the unknown. It's a high quality wine with loads of personality, but doesn't have the magisterial presence of its sibling. Drink by: 2033; Alcohol: 13.5%; Rating: 96 Points; James Halliday
 

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