First Drop The Matador Garnacha is a silky, seductive drink. They have taken all the classics flavours of Garnacha (Grenache), raspberries, florals, spice, Turkish delight, strawberries. Then they’ve given First Drop The Matador this beautifully soft and textural palate. There is a lot to love about First Drop The Matador; it reminds me of the wines from Rolf Binder that I have loved for many, many years.
The 2020 First Drop The Matador is ready to drink right now. I am sure First Drop The Matador will evolve to be more silky and savoury with 18 months to 7 years in the bottle. But it’s perfect right now.
Pair First Drop The Matador with paella.
First Drop The Matador Garnacha Barossa Valley 2020, and all wines are eligible for at least 5% off any six bottles. And 10% off any 12 bottles. Some wines will be at a more significant discount and not subject to further discounts.
Two friends, Matt ‘Gantos’ Gant and John ‘JR’ Retsas, brought First Drop into being in 2004. First Drop makes wines to drink rather than pontificate upon. Their base is the ‘Home of the Brave’ in the heart of the Barossa Valley. The house style of First Drop is silky, textural, drinkable wines with a hint of funk and a lot of interest. They source an eclectic range of varieties and produce a diversity of wine styles. The fruit comes from vineyards in the Adelaide Hills, McLaren Vale and Barossa. The packaging completes the wines, engaging and often humorous labels and stories behind them.
First Drop The Matador Garnacha Barossa Valley 2020 Winery Notes
“Matthew and Jono’s vineyard is at Ebenezer in the north of the Barossa – 300m above sea level on deep red clay.
VINTAGE 2020: Below average rainfall over winter followed by a very dry spring; with high winds and cold nights in November disrupting flowering; and hot, dry conditions in December and early January reducing bunch and berry size; resulted in yields at least 50% below the 10-year average. Thankfully a cooler February and March led to slower ripening despite the low yields. Whilst variability within vineyards, caused by the earlier extremes in the season, meant for tricky picking decisions, the low yields have seen intense flavours in whites, and reds that show great depth and structure. 2020 was yet another challenging vintage, to rival 2019, but again it’s delivered one of which to be proud, with Garnacha, Monastrell and Eden Valley Syrah showing particularly well. A harvest that will be remembered for the challenges posed by bush fires, difficult picking decisions, and a global pandemic, but one that presented a thrilling rollercoaster ride! Hands in the air!
Drink up, but also a 5-8 year proposition.”
One of the major wine regions of Australia. Known for making great Shiraz by any standard as well as Grenache, Mataro, Semillon and much more. There has been a lot of work finding the sub-regions that excel for each style and variety planted.
Spain’s gift to the world. We know it as Grenache, and I think everyone has a soft spot for it in some way. Almost too exuberant in expressing its sweet red fruits and high alcohol, it often needs a little bit of other wines to add moderation, structure and depth. Much like Abbott and Costello. Despite this, the wines of Priorat, Chateauneuf du Pape, Rioja and Aussie GSMs have an amazing ability to age for the long term.
The invasion of “Sunshine in a bottle” put Australian wine on the map. The fruity, easy-going, somewhat samey wines were endearing for a short time. Then the next big thing knocked them off their perch.
This forced producers to increase quality and emphasise the special terroirs of Australia. Of which, there are many. And many more yet to be discovered.
Wine is the result you get from fermented grape juice. There is proof of wine production dating back 8000 years ago. Fashions, innovations and many other factors have influenced the way wine has evolved over the years.
The wine grape is special. It contains everything you need to make grape wine except for the yeast, which lives on the outside of the skins.
Human inputs can influence the final product, including the viticulture (growing) choices. And the winemaker can shape the wine to a point too.
The best wines of the world often refer to terroir. Terroir is a French term that refers to all the climatic, geological and topographical influences on a specific piece of land. And it is true that neighbouring vineyards, grown identically, can taste noticeably different.
Fun fact; most of the colour for wines comes from the skins. There are only a handful of grapes that have red juice. Alicante is the most well known of these grapes.
By macerating the juice on the skins, the wine gains tannins and flavours. Certain compounds change the chemistry of the wine too.
Red wines tend to have higher alcohol. More tannin and more oak flavours compared to other styles of wine. But the thousands of grapes and terroirs they grow in influence this.
The Wine Depository
I, Phil, have been running The Wine Depository since 2011. The Wine Depository exists to make sure you are drinking the good wines. You can browse and pick what is interesting to you. Or you can make contact with me. I’ll make sure you get what you want, to your palate, to your budget and to your door.