. AFTER KATHLEEN
The winemaking and the story
. after Kathleen is a stop-off point in a series of experiments in texture and tannin in white wine, though most certainly not the finishing point.
Earlier incarnations have sported labels like ‘Ramato’ and ‘Reverse Cowgirl’, but have also remained unlabelled purely experimental wines.
James Broadway introduced me to the wines of Josko Gravner with their 1998 vintage. These wines were a profound shift from convention and piqued my curiosity, inspiring a series of vinous explorations with skin contact and unfiltered white wine.
Kathleen Quealy and Kevin McCarthy of Balnarring Vineyard on the Mornington Peninsula, have inspired Australians to drink pinot grigio; I’ve certainly been enjoying their friulano.
Way back in 1992 when I worked at Prunotto, Beppe Colla told me that picolit “was a dream and not a real grape”. Of course, I wanted to prove him wrong. So, I pursued my picolit dream and planted at Moondarra. It’s been a difficult variety to get to know and it’s only recently that I’ve understood the importance of cross-pollination. This is important because picolit is the only female Vitis Vinifera used for winemaking, and so when cross-pollinated with chardonnay (a Mendoza clone), verduzzo, gewürztraminer or pinot bianco, the results are exemplary.
At the suggestion of Dr Bailey Carrodus, I commenced growing pinot noir from seedling in 2005. Much to my ‘surprise’ it’s been a great success.
Today, you will find at the . after Kathleen vineyard, picolit, friulano, pinot grigio, Mendoza clone chardonnay and pinot bianco, as well as an equal area dedicated to seedlings produced with crosses of these varieties with picolit. Hopefully, some ribolla giallo will make its way into the blend and into the seedling program as well, completing the tableau of north-eastern Italy varieties.
. after Kathleen is a blend of friulano, pinot grigio, chardonnay and picolit. It’s gorgeously textured, due to our belief in unfined and unfiltered whites, and remains dry and tart with a nice mineral tang.
We love . after Kathleen with crustaceans.