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Hunter Valley

July 6, 2009
Ready for Tasting

Ready for Tasting

Last weekend i went to the Hunter Valley for some R&R.

It was actually for my 40th birthday. Yes, I know I look very young for 40, what can I say good diet, I guess.

Anyway we stayed at a fantastic house called Bonn Abbey with some friends for the weekend. one of my friends had organised a private tasting with Rod from Kinklewood Vineyard.

Krinklewood as you may or may not know is a biodynamic vineyard.

What is Biodynamics?

It was the Austrian Philosopher, Rudolf Steiner in 1924 in his series of lectures on agriculture that formalized the modern Biodynamic approach. European farmers had come to him for advice on their problems with soil fertility, the spread of animal disease & poor crop quality.

Biodynamics is a homeopathic medicine for agriculture, using natural means to obtain a better, more sustainable and healthier end product. The effect on the wine that you are drinking is that it is the most pure replication of the individuality of the vineyard.

  • Bio [meaning ‘Life’] refers to the life in the soil, having a large number & diversity of beneficial bacteria & fungi will protect the vines from insects and disease.
  • Dynamic [meaning ‘energy’] refers to the energising forces. Life is achieved in the vineyard by harnessing all the forces of the sun, the moon and the constellations.

Biodynamics is a science of life-forces, Steiner believed every plant is influenced by the two major energy forces in the world – the earthly & the cosmic.

Biodynamics considers the farm in its entirety as a living system, the soil is seen as an organism in its own right, it is the most natural agricultural ‘farming’ philosophy.

Nothing but live things should nourish the soil, and nothing dead or scientifically fabricated should be added to it. Hence the use of synthetic fertilizers or pesticides is prohibited.

Biodynamic farmers are in search of higher quality not quantity. Where as chemical agriculture has developed short-cuts to quantity by adding water soluble minerals to the soil. The plants take these up via water, thus by-passing their natural ability to seek from the soil what is needed for health, vitality and growth. The end result is a deadened soil and artificially stimulated growth.

Rod embodies all that I have become passionate about on my journey to sustainability.  somebody that has a passion for something different. When the hard times come they have stuck to their guns and utilised natural techniques to combat rot instead of reverting to the heavy use of chemicals.

Tank Sample

Tank Sample

I only tasted from one vineyard this time. Somehow felt the wine to be alive. They had a freshness, that I had not tasted before. then again I did have quite a bit to drink, and there is no doubt. That drinking wine at the vineyard, with the winemaker, in the beautiful winter sunshine, shapes ones views, perhaps a touch. I tell you after we tasted the tank sample of Madeira I am surprised I made it to dinner.

We had dinner at Margan Estate which was great. A bottle of their sparkling, a 2002 semillon which tasted like it had a smokey bacon characteristics through it, beautiful. I had this with a lovely light seafood tortalini.  For mains we had a local “Beef eye fillet, roasted baby beetroot and grain mustard crème fraiche” which we complimented with a 2000 Lindemans Pyrus, need I say more. Magic

As you can see my trips are all about food and wine. We talked to Rod about doing a biodynamic beef, which he raises, matched with his wines. That will be a dinner to be at.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. July 6, 2009 2:18 am

    Happy belated Birthday! Looks like a great way to celebrate the big Four Oh.

    • mumuland permalink*
      July 6, 2009 4:30 am

      thanks billy loved your Danks st post.

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