Wilson's Brewery Galafrey Grapeshot Seasonal Beer
Some of our Riesling vines are mixed up with our Cabernet Vines. Every year we handpick those vines and put the fruit into bins before we mechanical pick the rest of the block. This year vintage was thick and fast. We were running out of time and we promised the kids,and the kids next door,some hand picking grapes. So we got them over and had lots of fun for an hour but didn't really finish the job. So we moved on and pick the Riesling and off it went to be processed.
Next up- Handpicking Pinot. So after the backpackers finished picking the pinot we sent them through and pick the last of the Riesling and sent the bins to the winery. We simply jump in the bins and crush the fruit ( pinot) with our feet, add some yeast and let in ferment while plunging the fruit each day.
We looked at the Riesling fruit in the bin and did the same thing- after all, skin contact Riesling is all the rage! The skins adds lots of phenolics like banana skin tannins to the wine and it is so different from our other Riesling which is pure and has very little contact with the skins and is all about no phenolics. Then in the back of my mind I was thinking 'what am i going to do with this wine?' The phenolics were so strong and I did some research and just thought 'if you’re going to make a Riesling with strong phenolics you go the full length and don't shy away from it.' We left it on skins for 20 days which is quite a lot. Then it was a case of what to do next? press it out and put it on American oak and clean it and make a wine?......or we could make a beer out of it?
Around the same time Nigel meet Matt from Wilson's Brewery at a function. So I said " maybe we should have a chat to him?" Nigel gave him a call and he was supa keen and just about to make his next seasonal beer. And so it began. He did some research and names and there is quite a history of beer being made from wine hence the name Galafrey Grapeshot.
Unfortunately there wasn't a lot of it- only 5 kegs made. It is supa yummy. Creamy beer with citrus notes you can really see the great phenolic notes blend well with the yeasty beer. It's is 7% so not a light beer! And it's is almost all gone!......until next year!
I recommend trying any of Wilson's Brewery Beer- to find out more info about them here.
Photo story below
But also worth reading Travelling Corkcrews Blog on Galafrey and when Casey visited the winery. Casey talks about the Rielsing as it was the begining stage and at the time we weren't sure what we were going to do. Read it here
The Riesling on skins fermenting. Photo cerdit: Travelling Corkscrew
Kim plunging the Riesling. Photo cerdit: Travelling Corkscrew
Matt Wilson and Nigel Rowe having a beer at Wilson's Brewery.
The boys making the beer at Wilson's Brewery.