Swinney Farvie Frankland River Grenache 2018 ~ Great Southern, Western Australia
18/20 - Jancis Robinson
Nick Ryan "...This wine has emphatically inserted itself into the conversation around the best Grenache wines on the planet. It delivers the bright berry and exotic spice characters often associated with the variety — think wild raspberries, dark cherries, star anise and mace — but within a tight, coiled and tensile structure that stamps this as grenache of the utmost seriousness......This wine is one that actually adheres to the notion that great wine is made in the vineyard, with each vine picked and sorted in situ, and only the very best bunch or two from each vine, those sitting in the optimal spots in the vine’s architecture, being set aside for Farvie.....Grenache is a rare beast in Western Australia; Grenache has grown on untrellised bush vines even more so. But the masochism required to follow such a labour-intensive and low-yielding practice is something Swinney clearly has in spades."
Huon Hooke "...A stunning wine...The bouquet is superbly aromatic, with an array of spice nuances, fruit-driven and beguiling. The palate has great intensity and drives, elegance and charm, with a deep core of sweetly ripe berry flavours and substantial tannins drying the finish and aftertaste. The tannins are abundant and ripe, the finish very long-lasting. A modern grenache style that exhibits elegance and lightness of touch seldom seen in grenache in Australia."
John Jens "Quite simply the greatest Australian grenache or grenache blend that I have seen."
Jancis Robinson "A really gorgeous wine that's not like any other Grenache or Garnacha I have come across – presumably a terroir expression."
Ray Jordan "This is a remarkable wine that captures the essence of this variety in a way not seen before in Australia. It's a medium-bodied wine, yet the palate delivers deep and complex flavours through to an exceptional finish. Has a European gravelly, grainy mouthfeel that carries plenty of intensity albeit delivered with such poise and almost shy coyness."
Jeremy Oliver "Grand Cru level grenache, with a fiery, spicy bouquet of dark
cherries, redcurrants, blueberries and kernel notes lifted by a floral perfume and backed by suggestions of minerals, mint and paprika. It’s opulent but elegant, explosively intense but ultra-precise, with a deep presence of red and blue fruits artfully knit with cedary oak and a fine, gravelly extract that becomes more bony, assertive and savoury towards the finish. Very stable and long-term."
Max Allen "An extraordinary wine: fleshy maroon fruit flavours balanced by fine, sweeping tannins and an almost vermouth-like twist. A new benchmark for WA grenache, and one of this country’s finest examples of the grape."
Erin Larkin "Bright raspberry, pomegranate molasses and blackcurrant fruit on
the nose. The colour is a saturated fuchsia, vibrant and luminous. The palate leads with palate quenching dark berries, a sprinkling of black spice and firm, fine tannins that hold the quivering fruit through the very long finish. Utterly shimmering. Bush vine fruit from the Swinney vineyard in Frankland River holds the key to this wine; concentrated, intense, focused and precise. 5% of bush vine Mouvedre contributes to the textural complexity through the mid-palate and smooths out the already impossibly silky feels. I feel like this is the best grenache in Australia. Is it? I think it is. Rob Mann, WA welcomes you home!"
Huon Hooke "To say the latest crop of Mann-made Swinney wines is outstanding would be to damn with faint praise ... It’s a while since I’ve been so impressed by a crop of new wines".
Matthew Jukes "Just tasted one of the most remarkable new portfolio releases of the year. The 2018 reds and 2019 Riesling are all sensational, and the 2018 Farvie (Grenache), set for release in 2020, is one of the most remarkable and exquisite wines made from this great grape that I have ever tasted. Winemaker Rob Mann’s return to WA has collided with Matt Swinney’s amazing viticulture and the results are breathtaking."
Ray Jordan "It is impossible to overstate the significance of two wines [The Swinney Farvie Syrah 2018 and Farvie Grenache 2018. They represent a defining moment in WA Wine. The results are unlike anything seen before in WA and will redefine how Frankland River wine is perceived."
'Farvie' is the Swinney Vineyards premium label launched in 2020. Swinney made its debut in Halliday’s Australian Wine Companion 2015 with a five-star rating and was ranked in the top ten of best new wineries. The quality of the fruit produced from the Swinney vineyards has attracted significant demand from premium wine producers, but it was not until 2012 that a very small quantity of the first Swinney wines was released.
The fruit for Farvie wine is selectively sourced from particular blocks in Swinney's vineyards to produce wines of impressive purity, concentration, elegance, texture and distinctive terroir.
The Swinney family have been the go-to growers for many years supplying grapes to some of the most famous wines in Western Australia. Since 2012, they have kept back some of the best parcels of fruit and produced premium wines under their own label....and what a success its been with many awards and successive high scores from Australia's wine critics since.
The Great Southern wine region is in Western Australia. It comprises a rectangle 200 kilometres from east to west and over 100 kilometres from north to south, and is Australia's largest wine region. The Great Southern region has five nominated subregions for wine: the Porongurups, Mount Barker, Albany, Denmark and Frankland River. The vineyards spread throughout the area are known for the production of high-quality vines that have significant variations of terroir and climate. The region is the coolest of Western Australia’s viticultural areas; with a similar maritime influenced Mediterranean climate to Margaret River although with slightly less rainfall. This diverse region is known for Riesling, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot noir, Shiraz, and Malbec.