Jansz Tasmania Sparkling Vintage Release
Jansz Tasmania's New Vintage Releases – Méthode Tasmanoise
© Photo provided
Tasmania can be considered the polar opposite of everything you associate with Australia. It is a cool, windswept island in the South Pacific, cooled by Arctic waters: so cool in fact, that it is predestined as a place to grow grapes for sparkling wine.
This fact occurred to Champagne house Louis Roederer as long ago as 1986 and, in a joint venture with local farmers, they produced the first traditional method sparkling wines from Tasmanian grapes in 1989. Today, the Pinot Noir and Chardonnay vineyards they established are owned by the Hill-Smith Family and the estate is known as Jansz Tasmania, in memory of the Dutch seafarer Abel Janzsoon Tasman who first spotted the island in 1642.
“We grow all of our own fruit and the wines display all of the purity of Tasmania,” winemaker Jennifer Doyle says. That purity is measurable, too: the weather station at Cape Grim has reported some of the world’s cleanest air for years.
While Jansz Tasmania by now has various vineyards across the island, all the vintage sparkling wines come from the Pipers River area in the island’s north, the oldest blocks of vines overlook the Bass Strait. These root in Tasmania’s dolerite soils which are of volcanic origin.
Ageing and acidity
“Acidity really is the hallmark of the wines,” Doyle says, noting that this is the reason they all go through full malo-lactic fermentation. Acidity, or vivid freshness, is of course something these Tasmanian sparklers have in common with other quality sparkling wines of the world, yet they are distinct: the soils and the climate seem to combine into an incredible briskness.
Despite having aged on their lees for years, the wines have incredible verve. In fact, each bottle of these vintage wines states the number of days: “Crafted according to the traditional method and cellared for a minimum of 2741 days before release,” says the label of the Late Disgorged Vintage Cuvée 2012 – that amounts to 7.5 years. While delicious now, the wines are so youthful that they will continue evolving beautifully. If you are after brisk refreshment, then these Méthode Tasmanoise wines are for you.
Jansz Tasmania Vintage Cuvée 2015
Jansz Tasmania Vintage Rosé 2017
Jansz Tasmania Single Vineyard Vintage Chardonnay 2013
Jansz Tasmania Late Disgorged Vintage Cuvée 2012
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