If you've not been to Healesville – ever or just in the past couple of years – but you're an enjoyer of the finer drinks in life, then it's well worth factoring a visit into upcoming travel plans. The town has always been one of the key spots in which to base yourself for a few days of immersion in the Yarra Valley's delights, and these days is home to both Watts River and the reborn Matilda Bay breweries, Four Pillars Gin, cellar doors including that of Payten & Jones Wines and more besides.
Taking advantage of the growing number of booze world peers on their doorstep, the team at Watts River joined forces with Jayden Ong, the winemaker and partner in Cumulus Inc who now operates a cellar door within a stone's throw of their brewery. After the final pressing of 2021 at the winery, they selected "particularly bright and aromatic" 80 day whole-bunch syrah marc to be blended with a barrel-aged saison.
After an extended period together in stainless steel, they've reached a point where aromas that could almost be sour cherries morph into light red berries before unfurling into deeper syrah flavours as the crimson liquid crosses your palate. As with most things Watts River, it's got a lovely dryness, while the saison character isn't of the funky or peppery ilk, more floral blossom and a little hay. All in all, a delightful summery farmhouse drop.
Published November 15, 2021 2021-11-15 00:00:00