News

July 17

Back to normal in 2017 with vintage in early April. Lovely flavours, ripe grapes and good weather at harvest. We are fortunate to have ripeness and flavour at relatively low sugar levels so we don’t have the burden of high alcohols for our wines to carry. This year was excellent in that regard.

Continued fine reviews this year from Tony Love and James Halliday are always gratifying. In particular our 13 Chardonnay has been getting attention. Naturally I love them all.

 

10 August 2017|

April 16

Another early but excellent vintage. Weather after veraison (berry colouring and softening) was mild which is vital for flavour development. Each year it seems to be getting earlier; climate change certainly appears to be with us with our picking dates 3 weeks earlier on average than in the 1990s.

Crops were about average and fully ripe flavours achieved with good acid levels. I am a happy winemaker.

29 April 2016|

Nov 15 Halliday Top 100

Great to be included in James Halliday’s Top 100. A fine review for our 2014 Ferus Sauvignon and 97 points. I have always felt that fine wine should not be brash and overstated but, rather, subtle and delicate. This does not mean it should lack character and complexity.The review          ( below) clearly shows James has picked up on this aspect of our wine.

Wild yeast fermented in French barriques and aged on lees for 12 months. It offers a rare combination of elegance and complexity, the latter achieved without any funky/ reductive characters, the former with a combination of citrus, white flower and tropical fruits.

Still cruising

97 points

James Halliday Top 100 The Weekend Australian November 21st 2015

22 November 2015|

August 15

High praise from Halliday

We’ve just received great new reviews from James Halliday for our 2014 sauvignon blanc and 2013 Ferus. The 96 points James gave the 14 sauv blanc puts it among Australia’s top three sauvignons in the 2016 Halliday Wine Companion.

Here’s what James had to say:

2014 Geoff Weaver Lenswood Sauvignon Blanc

Dry-grown 37-year-old vines give moderate yields at low pH levels; an aromatic, flowery bouquet leads into a crisp, juicy palate that continues to accelerate all the way through to the finish and aftertaste. Fastidious winemaking has thrown all the emphasis on varietal fruit. A master of his art. 
96 points

James Halliday, 2016 Halliday Wine Companion.

2013 Geoff Weaver Ferus 

Estate-grown, wild yeast-fermented in French barriques and aged on lees for 12 months. It seems clear the oak is either totally or largely used for its impact is on texture and structure, leaving the varietal fruit to express itself with a savoury framework in support.

95 points
James Halliday, 2016 Halliday Wine Companion.

Click here to buy these wines directly from us.

Our vineyards are recognised by James Halliday as a “red 5 star winery” with a long track record of excellence — truly the best of the best.

Early heat, early harvest

The 2015 season was a good one for us. We have made some beautiful wines with the riesling and sauvignon to be bottled soon.

We harvested in early March, continuing our recent run of early vintages. On average harvest is now three weeks earlier than it was in the ‘90s. This is due to warmer than average early season temperatures in October and November which set the vine’s biological processes off to a faster than normal start, resulting in the earlier harvest. We have been fortunate in having not had heat extremes; in fact the seasons have been around average in heat degree days which is a measure of the overall warmth of the growing season. It is the temperature post veraison (berry softening) which is crucial for style and quality, and fortunately these were mild in 2015.

I’m sure our dry grown vines are able to handle the vagaries of the seasons better than if we irrigated. Being 30-year-old vines and so deep rooted they have a steady but restricted supply of water, and if we have a major rain event they don’t take up water as quickly as the more surface-rooted irrigated vines do. I believe that non irrigation, coupled with conservative bud numbers left at pruning (and hence low crops), is a crucial quality factor for our wines.

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11 August 2015|

Vintage 2014

We have been making wine here for 30 years and I haven’t seen an average year yet.

Another roller-coaster season with the warmest October ever to start the growing season (average temp 18 deg C vs average of 13.1 deg C) followed by an unseasonally cool November which upset flowering in Chardonnay and Pinot. This caused very poor fruit set in Chardonnay and Pinot. Thankfully the Sauvignon flowered after the cool weather and set normally.

Unprecedented numbers of very hot days in Jan and early Feb thankfully pre veraison where flavour impact is minimal. Our dryland vines with their deep roots sailed through the heat unaffected.

Then rain. We had 130mm of rain on the 13th and 14th of February which caused some splitting in the small berries of Chardonnay and Pinot followed by mould. The result is a write-off of Chardonnay and Pinot.

Thanks goodness we have just bottled our beautiful 2013 Chardonnay and Pinot so we will have supplies.

All through this the Sauvignon was fine. An average crop which had veraison (the start of ripening when the berries soften) post heat and rain. This fruit matured well and we picked over 3 days from the13th to the 15th of March.

We will make a Ferus this year. Our 2013 Ferus was bottled in February after its year on lees in old barrels and it is looking taught and fine. One for the long haul.

And the Riesling. Well I just don’t think 2014 is a year for us with Riesling. As I speak the grapes are out in another 30mm of rain and the small crop has suffered. So we’ll leave it on the vine, lick our financial woulds and wait for 2015 and have another go.

The 2013 Riesling has just received 96 points from James Halliday and I must say its a cracker. It is our best Riesling yet I think. So fine and delicate, hauntingly perfumed with a tight savoury finesse on the palate.
So thats it. A tough growing season with some lovely Sauvignon but no Chardonnay, Pinot or Riesling to show for it.

17 March 2014|

Vintage 2013

Really good vintage. Average crops of fully ripe grapes with lovely fine flavours. Bottling Sauvignon Blanc and Riesling next week.

Chardonnay and Pinot quietly resting in oak as well as our first Ferus wild yeast Sauvignon since 2009. Harvest was again earlier than normal. Our “normal” is now early March. No doubt there is a trend in ealier harvests for us. The season was kind with no real heat waves post veraison which is the critical time.

We continue to receive glowing reviews.
James Halliday’s Top South Australian Wines May 2013
2012 Sauvignon Blanc
Pale straw-green; year in year out, one of the most elegant (and most reliable) sauvignon blancs on the market; kiwi fruit, citrus and dab of white peach drive the fragrant bouquet and fresh palate., the finish dry and almost savoury. Prior history shows the wine does not have to be consumed immediately. 12.5%alc 95 points

James Halliday’s Wine Companion June-July 2013
2000 Lenswood Cabernet-Merlot
Estate-grown, and spent 24 months in French oak; the decision to keep part of the make for extended bottle age, and thus a museum release, has been fully justified. This is a rare opportunity to buy a fully mature wine direct from the cellar of the maker. All the components of dark berry fruits, oak and tannins have joined seamlessly and harmoniously. There will, I suppose, be some bottle variation, but it is hard to imagine a more perfect bottle than this one. 13.5% alc 96 points

30 May 2013|

May 30th 2013

Really good vintage. Average crops of fully ripe grapes with lovely fine flavours. Bottling Sauvignon Blanc and Riesling next week.

Chardonnay and Pinot quietly resting in oak as well as our first Ferus wild yeast Sauvignon since 2009. Harvest was again earlier than normal. Our “normal” is now early March. No doubt there is a trend in ealier harvests for us. The season was kind with no real heat waves post veraison which is the critical time.

We continue to receive glowing reviews.

James Halliday’s Top South Australian Wines May 2013

2012 Sauvignon Blanc

Pale straw-green; year in year out, one of the most elegant (and most reliable) sauvignon blancs on the market; kiwi fruit, citrus and dab of white peach drive the fragrant bouquet and fresh palate., the finish dry and almost savoury. Prior history shows the wine does not have to be consumed immediately. 12.5%alc 95 points

James Halliday’s Wine Companion June-July 2013

2000 Lenswood Cabernet-Merlot

Estate-grown, and spent 24 months in French oak; the decision to keep part of the make for extended bottle age, and thus a museum release, has been fully justified. This is a rare opportunity to buy a fully mature wine direct from the cellar of the maker. All the components of dark berry fruits, oak and tannins have joined seamlessly and harmoniously. There will, I suppose, be some bottle variation, but it is hard to imagine a more perfect bottle than this one. 13.5% alc 96 points

30 May 2013|

February 2013

Lots happening. Our grapes are almost all through veraison (the start of ripening when the reds colour and the white grapes soften) and so we are about 40 days from harvest subject to the weather. Crop levels are about average at 2.5kg/vine (7 tonnes/ha) and the vineyard is a picture.

Yesterday we bottled our 2012 Chardonnay and Pinot Noir wines and I am delighted with them. As with all our wines they are at least a year from being anywhere near their best but the concentration, balance, finesse and complexity are all there. Both just on 12% alcohol which I love. The heavy whack of alcoholic wines is so often overbearing. The 2012 wines all had high natural acid levels which means fine crisp savoury wines that compliment food rather than compete.

The 2012 Sauvignon is almost gone now but it is now in the full bloom of its youth. All wines need at least 6 months to grow out of their adolescent awkwardness and it is now the fine fragance and depth can be seen all against the background of the crisp natural acid.

8 February 2013|

May 2012

Our 2012 Sauvignon and Riesling wines now being prepared for bottling and looking fresh and taught with beautiful flavours. I am really happy with them both. Bottling mid May and then we wait for them to settle down and show their potential.

Chardonnay and Pinot quietly going through malolactic ferment also slowly building flavour. We’ll bottle these next year after 12 months in oak on lees. Fine wine takes time.

Some excellent reviews in the latest James Halliday’s Wine Companion (June-July 2012) for two of our 2010 wines.

2010 Chardonnay

Bright green-straw, wild yeast fermented in French oak, malolactic fermentation and lees contact have given the extra complexity and texture sought by Geoff Weaver, but have also left the vibrant fruit and natural acidity in charge. The finish very long. 95 points

Under the heading “worth another look”

2010 Sauvignon Blanc

Pale straw-green; the bouquet has the fragrance absent from many ‘10s, and the palate has exceptional intensity and drive, with a totally seductive mix of passionfruit, citrus and gooseberry; cleansing acidity completes a classy package, well able to take on the might of Marlborough. 95 points

2 May 2012|

March 2012

An early but succesful vintage. A mild summer with few extreme temperatures really helped the vines. Crops were tiny in Pinot, Chardonnay and Riesling (less than 1kg per vine) and still less than 2 kg per vine in Sauv blanc. The sugars, flavous, acids and concentration was excellent and we look forward to some lovely wines.

A glowing review from Jeremy Oliver in his annual wine book of our 2010 Chardonnay.

A joyful, delightfully fruit-driven Chardonnay with pristine freshness,length and elegance. Deep aromas of nectarine and peach knit tightly with nutty, dusty and spicy oak, with undertones of creamy yeast, cloves, cinnamon and faint smokiness. It’s long and concentrated, with penetrative flavour of grapefruit, melon, pineapple and stonefruit tightly integrated with fresh oak and finishing with crunchy acids and excellent length.

94 points Jeremy Oliver

20 March 2012|