Respecting Nature at Tumblong Hills
For Tumblong Hills vigneron Simon Robertson, the key to creating superior quality grapes is to respect the fundamentals of nature.
At Tumblong Hills in Gundagai, they nurture their vines using biodynamic principles to try to achieve the perfect ingredients for standout wines. Vigneron Simon Robertson is in the pursuit of trying to achieve the perfectly balanced vine, using healthy soils and pasture competition to create this balance.
Simon explains, “improving the structure of the soil through a healthy multi species pasture creating humus, allows the vines to feed naturally through their feeder root. The resulting fruit develops a cell structure that best expresses its environment, giving a distinctive wine quality that reflects where it comes from.”
Of course, you can have the conditions for optimum vineyard health, but you also need to make the right varietal choices. To do this there is always an eye on an attractive wine style, you then have to find a variety that works locally – at Tumblong Hills, they’ve found two in the last few years, Fiano and Chenin Blanc.
The combination of balanced vines and smart varietal choices gives the team a certain amount of control over their wine quality. But, of course, vintage conditions are completely out of their control.
While every year has its challenges, they know through experience the process required to navigate the season, but nature will always throw some serious curve balls. “Managing those curve balls and tasting the difference as the fruit flavours develop is very satisfying and we look for that little bit of magic from the vintage.”
plenty to premium
In 2021, that magic has been delivered in “wines with bright fruit and subtle power, lovely rounded tannins in the reds and ripe fruit acids in the whites. It was a very wet, cool year, one of the wettest on record for Gundagai, “it saw fruit yield down by around 30% mainly due to drought conditions from previous years and disease pressure that comes with a wet year.”
This quality of the 2021 fruit can can be tasted throughout the Tumblong Hills portfolio, starting with the Track Winding Back range. Named after the iconic Gundagai song, this range features Shiraz and Cabernet which deliver on regional expression.
The Table of Plenty range is also inspired by the pioneering story of Tumblong Hills’ home in Gundagai and its heritage as a melting pot of cultures. This range champions Italian varieties that thrive in their picturesque vineyards.
“These estate grown varietals of Barbera, Nebbiolo, Sangiovese and Fiano are full of flavour and textures. Delivering generosity of spirit, they are the perfect easy-drinking, feast-loving companion for enjoying with family and friends.”
The Tumblong Hills range, featuring Chenin Blanc, Shiraz and Chardonnay, “is an avowal to our craft and home, and our fingerprint in the vast world of wine.”
Through the Tumblong Hills Premium range, they “explore a deeper meaning of our concept of terroir.”
They are able to do this thanks to the gently sloping, undulating country of the vineyard, which provides the fortune to individually nurture highly regarded sites.
“J-Block Cabernet Sauvignon and J-Block Cuvée Shiraz are testament to one such special site, while Premieré Cuvée Shiraz is our ultimate estate blend of this fine varietal.”
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Tumblong Hills have an ambition to produce some of the finest wines available in the world today. With a strong focus on expressing the vineyard’s unique characteristics, the Tumblong Hills team work passionately and tirelessly nurturing vines, handpicking fruit at their optimal point of ripening, understanding the often dynamic climate, and of course, experiencing the joy of the first comprehensive tasting after harvest.
Over the years, the close-knit Tumblong Hills team have refined their processes to make achieving world-class results, from vine to bottle, as seamless as possible.