Winemaking

They continue with their minimal intervention in the winery by allowing natural or ‘wild’ yeast ferments (no commercial yeasts are added), no artificial fining agents and most of the red wines are bottled with minimal or no filtration. This is very much going back to the ‘old ways’ of winemaking but doing this in a modern winery with modern equipment and very good knowledge of the science of winemaking……the best of both worlds. And it is small batch winemaking – all of the Estate and Reserve Block reds are fermented in 1.5-2 tonne batches and the whites are made block by block. This further accentuates the individuality of the wines and allows maximum quality to be achieved from each season.

Historically around 80-90% of the fruit came from the Estate vineyards and from 2013 this was tightened up so that the Reserve and Estate ranges are made only from 100% Delatite grown fruit. No added yeasts have been used since the 2009 vintage – indigenous or ‘wild’ yeasts have done all the fermenting giving added complexity. Alongside this Delatite has launched the High Ground range of wines produced from a mix of Delatite grown fruit and that from neighbouring vineyards – all from our High Country wine growing area.

A pointer to the quality of the new range is that the 2015 Pinot noir has been selected for Jetstar International Business Class flights for next 12 months (one of only two Pinot noirs on the list) and the 2015 Pinot gris for Qantas Business Class International.

David Ritchie and Andy Browning are always to try making new, interesting wines and since the 2016 vintage three new wines have been released. The first was the 2016 Pinot gris Gewurztraminer Hell’s Window. This is a natural or ‘orange/amber’ wine and was hand-picked, fermented on skins in tank (then old French oak hogsheads) and spent a further five months on lees in oak before bottling in September 2016. No fining, filtration or adjustments were made.

And in March 2017 two new wines have been released; 2016 Yarra Chardonnay and 2016 Yarra Pinot noir. These have been made from fruit grown at the Vestey family’s Coombe Farm vineyard in the heart of the Yarra Valley. Although not bio dynamically grown the team at Coombe follow sustainable practices and going forward they will follow our guidelines on growing the fruit from our chosen blocks using less pesticides.

All that the small viticulture and winemaking team, at Delatite, does is with the aim of producing very individual wines with great structure and complexity that will also age extremely well, be exceptional partners to a variety of foods, and also be very nice to drink!

This dedication to quality and integrity in both the vineyard and winery is also evident in the many awards the winery has received. Delatite Wines has been consistently successful in the show circuit, and favourably reviewed in the media. “This is uncompromising cool climate viticulture and the wines naturally reflect that.” wrote James Halliday’s in his Australian Wine Companion 2018, rating Delatite as a ‘Five Red Star Winery’ from 2009 - 2018.