Tasting notes: Kay Brothers 2016 Griffon's Key Grenache »

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Kay Brothers 2016 Griffons Key Grenache

Kay Brothers 2016 Griffons Key Grenache [©Kay Brothers]

Kay Brothers basket press


Siblings Herbert, Frederick and Rose Kay bought their Amery property in October 1890. In July the following year, planting of 40,800 vine cuttings started and an iconic McLaren Vale wine family name began that continues today with the fourth generation.

The family's vision is to protect the values of its forebears and continue to produce sustainable wines of exemplary quality. The latter aim is certainly carried out with recent wins as Best in Show and Bushing King at the McLaren Vale Wine Show and topping the Halliday Grenache Challenge.

Grenache has been grown here since 1895 and, like all the Kay Brother wines, is still pressed in the baskets from 1928.

Here are the tasting notes for that award-winning wine, the Kay Brothers 2016 Griffon's Key Grenache:

Winemaking and viticulture: the 2016 vintage growing season began with a dry but cool spring. Flowering conditions were excellent, therefore optimising fruit set. Mild but dry conditions continued in early summer until the 29th of January, when 44 mm of welcome rain was received. The rain freshened canopies and kick-started veraison.

The final ripening period was perfect for grenache, producing lovely even colour and flavour development in all bunches.

The vineyard has a north-eastern exposure and the soils are shallow red sandy loam over complex Geology comprising quartz and ironstone gravels, weathered and calcareous sandstone, siltstone and limestone.

The best parcels of hand-picked grenache were selected from the Amery vineyard. Fruit was open fermented and hand plunged for 10 days on skins, prior to traditional basket pressing in our 1928 press. The wine matured a further 10 months in aged French oak puncheons.

Tasting notes:  this wine is deep ruby in colour with a violet hue and the nose has alluring aromas of rose petal, lavender and dark Morello cherry.

Over the palate it is extremely concentrated, complex and layered with rich dark fruits such as boysenberry and cherry. Astounding length provided by fine grained lingering tannin.

A powerful and seductive grenache!

Food match: Duck breast smoked or simply seared, the classic match of a traditional cassoulet. or simply a good charcuterie board.

Grape variety: 100% grenache

Alc/vol: 14.5%

RRP A$45.00 bottle
(direct from vineyard – note very limited supply and maximum purchase limit 2 bottles per order)



2017 McLaren Vale Wine Show :

  • Best McLaren Vale Wine – Bushing Monarch: Griffon's Key Grenache
  • Best Grenache One Year Old or Younger:  Griffon's Key Grenache
  • Best Grenache: Griffon's Key Grenache
  • Best Single Vineyard Wine Any Style other than Shiraz: Griffon's Key Grenache
  • Best Single Vineyard Viticulturalist: Duncan Kennedy / Griffon's Key Grenache
  • Gold Medal – 2016: Griffon's Key Grenache

Inaugural James Halliday Grenache Challenge
Overall winner



  • McLaren Vale (SA)

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November 16th, 2017
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