Jasper Hill

Jasper Hill + Occams Razor (Bio-Dynamic): Heathcote, Victoria
Established in 1975 by Ron and Elva Laughton, Jasper Hill producers some of Australia’s most compelling and sought after wines. Located at Heathcote in Central Victoria on ancient Cambrian soils-deep, red coloured, well drained gravely loams on undulating hillsides. These support low-vigour vine growth without the need for  supplementary irrigation.
The wines are produced entirely on the estate using organic/biodynamic principles. Inter row mulching and self made organic compost is used to improve soil organic matter. This allows greater bio-diversity in micro flora and fauna, supporting large earthworm populations beneficial for natural soil fertility. Following these principles no synthetic chemicals have ever been applied to the soils or vines. Vines are grown on un-grafted root-stock and non irrigated, expressing flavours and characteristics natural to their variety and terroir. Grown at elevations of 1000 feet the vines benefit from warm days but cool nights, imperative for natural acid retention and structure. None of the wines from Jasper Hill vineyards has even been acid adjusted at any stage. These are natural wines of striking purity.

Whether it’s down to this very special rift of dirt or not, these wines are simply incredible.”
Robert Parker—The Wine Advocate

2016 Jasper Hill Georgia’s Paddock Riesling       very limited this vintage
Natural yeast ferment and no acid adjustment result in a seamless wine of finesse, texture and elegance. “With a very dry winter and spring, the 2016 vintage exhibits the usual citrus characteristics, but with even more power and depth. Completely dry, with lime dominant over lemon and even a little mandarin showing, along with some tropical fruits and passion fruit, matched to the zesty natural acidity and minerality. Great length. Only 90 dozen produced.  12.5% alc/vol” Ron Laughton

2015 Jasper Hill Georgia’s Paddock Shiraz 375ml, 750ml + 1500ml
“From another great vintage, with 12 months elevage in French oak barriques, of which 20% were new. Exhibiting the typical characters of mixed red berries and general spiciness to the velvety, viscous, well-balanced and rounded palate. Powerful wine, with fine, supple tannins and a fabulous length. Great longevity again, but regardless, this will immediately appear on wine lists matched to grilled red meats without any detriment. 15.0% alc/vol.” Ron Laughton

2015 Jasper Hill Emily’s Paddock Shiraz allocation only – very limited
“(with 3% Cabernet Franc) Typical complex creamy mint, aniseed, asian spice characters with a hint of chocolate in a generous and powerful wine of exceptional elegance, length and balance between the natural acidity and impeccable tannins. This one is as good as it gets. Long cellaring will reward, but it is delicious now! 15.0% alc/vol” Ron

2015 Occams Razor Shiraz
“Accentuating differences in terroir, Emily’s own wine from a single vineyard south of Heathcote, grown on soil derived from granite compared to the Jasper Hill wines from Cambrian basaltic soils. A ripe fruitiness with a floral touch to the bouquet, licorice/aniseed, even licorice allsorts. Fine legs, powerful long tannins. Delicious now and can also be cellared. 15.0% alc/vol” Ron Laughton

2015 Jasper Hill Georgia’s Paddock Nebbiolo
“Don’t be deceived by the light red, almost pinot-ish colour, compared with the intense crimson of its Shiraz sisters. A powerhouse of typical long, forceful mouth coating tannins on the finish, preceded by a strong aroma of strawberries and a savouriness that lingers forever, including some stone fruit hints. 14.0% alc/vol”  Ron Laughton

2015 Jasper Hill Georgia’s Paddock Semillon
“Fourteen months in bottle before release. Honeyed aromas follow through on to the generous palate, with lanolin characters blending in to the light French oak background. Not Hunter in style, more dry white Bordeaux. 13.0% alc/vol”  Ron Laughton

2015 Georgia’s Paddock Riesling
Natural yeast ferment and no acid adjustment result in a seamless wine of finesse, texture and elegance. “With its refreshing acidity, coupled with delicious citric flavours of lemon and lime, this is a cleansing, powerful aperitif that leads beautifully into the first course, particularly full flavoured seafood with a slice of lemon. Georgia’s Paddock Riesling also ages gracefully, if you desire more develope d characters. 13.0% alc/vol” Ron Laughton

2014 Georgia’s Paddock Shiraz
“Another classic, of deep crimson colour, intense aromas of red berries and mixed spices that follow through on to the palate , balanced with powerful but already supple tannins and fabulous natural acidity. Delicious – drink any time from now over the next twenty years. 15.0% alc/vol.” Ron Laughton

2014 Emily’s Paddock Shiraz – allocation only – very limited (with 3% Cabernet Franc)
The usual, brooding, dense magenta tones with an immediate perfumed, minty bouquet leading on to a spicy, black berried, blackcurrant, complex set of flavours followed by a firm tannic finish. With a great natural acid backbone, this one is as good as Emily’s Paddock gets. Long-living. 15.0% alc/vol” Ron Laughton

2014 Occams Razor Shiraz
“Emily’s own wine, her 14th vintage, from a single granitic soil organic vineyard south of Heathcote. Plusher fruits compared to Georgia’s Paddock Shiraz and a little more
tannic; bright crimson, lots of depth, plumy, ripe red fruits. Delicious now, but you will be rewarded with cellaring. 15.5% alc/vol” Ron Laughton

2013 Georgia’s Paddock Riesling
Natural yeast ferment and no acid adjustment result in a seamless wine of finesse, texture and elegance.“With an intense lime/lemon citric nose, the ‘bone dry’ palate and light phenolics coupled with high level natural acidity makes this the perfect aperitif and first course wine. 12.0% alc/vol” Ron Laughton

2012 Cornella Vineyard Grenache
“A dark red brooding beauty with its characteristic ripe raspberry aromas coupled with a clean earthiness on the palate and a swag of tannin. A big, well balanced wine, re-gardless of the high alcohol. 15.5% alc/vol.”
Ron Laughton

2012 Georgia’s Paddock Nebbiolo “A fickle variety, not produced every year. This is one of our best; deep brick-red coloured, lifted floral aromas (rose?) countered by a generous savoury palate and powerful tannic finish, a trademark of the Nebbiolo grape. Drink now or cellar long term. 14.5% alc/vol .” Ron Laughton

2012 Georgia’s Paddock Shiraz
“As usual, the vivid magenta colour indicates the power to come on the palate with mixed spices, herbs and lots of ripe red berries. Very typical. Great acid/tannin balance and mouth-filling viscosity. Delicious now and can also be cellared long term if desired. 13.5% alc/vol.” Ron Laughton

2012 Emily’s Paddock Shirazallocation only – very limited
“(with 3% Cabernet Franc) A classic; bright appearance with perfumed, minerally, spiciness and great natural acidity, balanced with fine supple tannins and the normal creaminess of oak in the background. Exceptional length and complexity. Will cellar for a long time if you can keep your hands off. 13.0% alc/vol.” Ron Laughton

2012 Occams Razor Shiraz “Beautiful red colour with lifted, sweet fruity aromas and palate, coupled with fine grained tannins. Emily’s own wine made from a single vineyard near Mia Mia, south of Heathcote. Grown on granitic soil, this a delicious and noble contrast to the Cambrian soil grown Jasper Hill Shiraz wines. Drink now or cellar. 15.0% alc/vol.” Ron Laughton

2012 Georgia’s Paddock Riesling -
Natural yeast ferment and no acid adjustment result in a seamless wine of finesse, texture and elegance.
“Very aromatic floral, green apple/pear and lemon aromas follow through on to the crisp dry mouth cleansing palate. Slightly less weighty than the previous couple of vintages, but just as long on the finish. Delicious aperitif. 11.0% alc/vol.” Ron Laughton

2011 Georgia’s Paddock Viognier   
“After the blockbuster of the 2009 first release, this wine is a more delicate expression of typical Viognier characteristics and is better-off for it – viscous mouthfeel, ripe apricot and peach stone-fruit aromas and flavours, great balance and length, perfect food wine and low in alcohol.”  Ron Laughton

2011 Georgia’s Paddock Nebbiolo
“Deliciously soft, fruity and not too tannic, with the Italianate savouriness and brick colour associated with the variety. Floral hints on the nose, beautiful complexity on the palate and zingy acidity with medium body.”  Ron Laughton

2011 The Sisters Shiraz 
“A blend of 20% Emily’s Paddock and 80% Georgia’s Paddock Shiraz wines, combining the creaminess, minerality and perfumed characteristics of the Emily’s in harmony with the ripe red berries and spiciness of the Georgia’s. The sum is superior to the individual components. Very elegant, power without too much weight; coming from a cooler year, this wine is delicious now and has medium term cellaring possibilities of 10-15 years.”  Ron Laughton

2011 Occams Razor Shiraz
“Emily’s own single vineyard wine, from fruit grown on granitic soil in the south of the Heathcote GI by Jasper Hill’s vineyard manager, Andrew Conforti. Previous vintage now serving in Michelin 3 Star ‘Per Se’ restaurant, Manhattan. Very, very good, but different to the Cambrian soil Jasper Hill flavours; more plums and dark fruit. Delicious now; also has great cellaring potential. 14.5% alc/vol ” Ron Laughton

2010 Cornella Vineyard Grenache
“Not even a hint of grenache jamminess here, but powerful, pure fresh raspberries on the nose and palate, with a lovely clean fruity finish. A relatively new wine for us that has been gaining admirers from non-grenache drinkers.“ Ron Laughton

2010 Georgia’s Paddock Nebbiolo
“Deliciously soft, fruity and less tannic than previous ones, but still with that Italianate savouriness and brick colour of the variety.” Ron Laughton

2010 Georgia’s Paddock Shiraz
“Medium to deep garnet-purple in color, the 2010 Georgia’s Paddock Shiraz has a pronounced nose of black cherries, creme de cassis, black pepper and loam with hints of coffee, anise and yeast extract. Medium to full-bodied and with a great concentration of spicy / peppery black fruit flavors, it has just enough acid and a medium to firm level of velvety tannins, finishing long. It’s a wonderfully elegant expression of this vineyard. Though approachable now, it should drink best 2014 to 2024+.”  The Wine Advocate June 2012

2010 Emily’s Paddock Shiraz
“Medium to deep garnet-purple colored, the 2010 Emily’s Paddock Shiraz Cabernet Franc has lifted cassis and black plum notes with an undercurrent of blackberry preserves, menthol, tree bark, underbrush, chocolate and salami plus a whiff of chocolate box. The medium to full-bodied palate is superbly structured with a medium to firm level of grainy tannins and refreshing acid supporting the taut, generous fruit, finishing long, with a savory character coming through. Still a little young, give it another 2-3 years in bottle at least and drink it to 2026+.” The Wine Advocate June 2012

 PREVIOUS VINTAGES

2011 Georgia’s Paddock Riesling
Natural yeast ferment and no acid adjustment result in a seamless wine of finesse, texture and elegance.
Very aromatic floral, green apple/pear and lemon aromas follow through on to the crisp dry mouth cleansing palate. Slightly less weighty than the previous couple of vintages, but just as long on the finish. Delicious aperitif. 11.0% alc/vol.” Ron Laughton

2009 Cornella Vineyard Grenache
Not even a hint of grenache jamminess here, but powerful, pure fresh raspberries on the nose and palate, with a lovely clean fruity finish. A relatively new wine for us that has been gaining admirers from non-grenache drinkers.” Ron Laughton

2010 Georgia’s Paddock Shiraz
“Medium to deep garnet-purple in color, the 2010 Georgia’s Paddock Shiraz has a pronounced nose of black cherries, creme de cassis, black pepper and loam with hints of coffee, anise and yeast extract. Medium to full-bodied and with a great concentration of spicy / peppery black fruit flavors, it has just enough acid and a medium to firm level of velvety tannins, finishing long. It’s a wonderfully elegant expression of this vineyard. Though approachable now, it should drink best 2014 to 2024+.”  The Wine Advocate June 2012

2010 Emily’s Paddock Shiraz
“Medium to deep garnet-purple colored, the 2010 Emily’s Paddock Shiraz Cabernet Franc has lifted cassis and black plum notes with an undercurrent of blackberry preserves, menthol, tree bark, underbrush, chocolate and salami plus a whiff of chocolate box. The medium to full-bodied palate is superbly structured with a medium to firm level of grainy tannins and refreshing acid supporting the taut, generous fruit, finishing long, with a savory character coming through. Still a little young, give it another 2-3 years in bottle at least and drink it to 2026+.” The Wine Advocate June 2012

2009 Cornella Vineyard Grenache
“Not even a hint of grenache jamminess here, but powerful, pure fresh raspberries on the nose and palate, with a lovely clean fruity finish. A relatively new wine for us that has been gaining admirers from non-grenache drinkers.“ Ron Laughton

2008 Cornella Vineyard Grenache
“The 2008 Cornella Vineyard Grenache is a big beauty weighing in at 16% alcohol, yet it’s a style that is all about the velvety texture it exudes. Pale to medium garnet colored, it gives pronounced aromas of warm raspberries, powdered cinnamon and nutmeg with dashes of pepper and balsamic. A medium to high level of those wonderful velveteen tannins come though on the palate fleshed by earthy berry fruit and medium acidity. The finish is long and a little warm. Drink this one now to 2016+.”  Robert Parkers The Wine Advocate #189 June 2010

2008 Georgia’s Paddock Shiraz
“The 2008 Georgia’s Paddock Shiraz is a fleshier, opulent and more forward style than Emily’s. Deep garnet colored, it has an open and expressive nose of blackberry, licorice, sandalwood, spice box, earth and a hint of game. Fine, firm tannins and medium-high acidity give great structure to the complex palate. Very long and layered in the finish, this wine is best approached from 2011 and enjoyed through 2020+. 300 cases were produced.” Robert Parkers The Wine Advocate #189 June 2010

The Soils
Quite rare in the world and particularly in Australia, here they are unusually deep (4metre), red coloured, well drained, gravelly loams on undulating hillsides, but with good moisture retention.
They occur in a narrow, non-contiguous strip between two naturally occurring North/South faults and is typically only a few hundred metres wide. The faults give rise to a complex mineralogy.
Soil organic matter is high, allowing great bio-diversity in micro flora and fauna and supporting large earthworm populations – all beneficial for natural soil fertility. No synthetic chemicals have ever been applied to the soil or vines; the vineyards are totally organic; no insecticides, no herbicides, no synthetic fungicides and no artificial fertilisers. We produce our own organic compost for vineyard dressing.
The soil surface is either covered in mulch derived from vine prunings, leguminous cover crops and native grasses, or is lightly cultivated, with aeration. Minimal tillage is practiced, within and between vine-rows, using lightweight 4WD tractors to minimise soil compaction.
Our aim is to make great wine, with the preservation of nature’s flavours, complexities and balance in our wines by using minimal intervention in our vineyards and in the cellar – to allow the individual vineyard’s “terroir” or sense of place to express itself.
Our wines are produced entirely on the estate using organic/biodynamic principles. We produce our own organic compost and have never used synthetic chemicals on either the vines or the soils, since our vineyards were planted in 1975.
Viticultural practices are as close to nature as we can get them: own rooted vines (ie. not grafted on to American rootstocks to confer Phylloxera resistance), no irrigation whatsoever, minimal tillage, natural inter-row mulching leading to broad bio-diversity, in turn giving depth and intensity to our wines. Only hand pruning of the vines and hand harvesting of the fruit can allow us the human connection to our living soil.
Emily’s Paddock: three hectares of Shiraz including around five percent Cabernet Franc, yielding about two tonnes per hectare (14hL per hectare). Planted in 1975/76.
Georgia’s Paddock: twelve hectares of Shiraz yielding about three tonnes per hectare (20hl per hectare). Three hectares of Riesling giving about three tonnes per hectare (20 hL per hectare). Planted in 195/76 with further small plantings done after the vineyard was ravaged by bushfire in 1987. One hectare each of Semillon planted in 1992 (since grafted over), and Nebbiolo planted in 1993.
Cornella Vineyard: four hectares of Grenache planted in 1998.
All vineyards are planted on their own roots, to retain purity of style, rather than grafted on to Phylloxera-resistant American non-vinifera root stock.
The vines have a sunny, open, balanced canopy that keeps fungal diseases at bay and eliminates the need for summer pruning, leaf plucking and crop reduction. All picking and pruning is carried out by hand by wonderfully skilled people from the district.
All vineyards are unirrigated and rely on natural rainfall only.
Both Emily’s and Georgia’s Paddocks are on elevated hillsides at an altitude of 320 metres (1000 feet) and are approximately 1 km apart. Emily’s Paddock has a NE aspect and shallower soil, while Georgia’s Paddock has a NW aspect and the deeper soil. The vineyard at Cornella, is 20km north of Emily’s Paddock, within the Heathcote Region and on the same Cambrian soil, with an altitude of 330 meters and a NE aspect.