x
  • Country ranking ?

    566
  • Producer ranking ?

    53
  • Decanting time

    3h
  • When to drink

    now to 2035
  • Food Pairing

    Irish lamb stews and hotpots

The Story

Nicolaus Stanitski, a Henschke ancestor, originally planted the Hill of Grace vineyard during the 1860s above the Barossa Valley. During the 1950s Cyril Henschke took his family concern back to wine and established the Hill of Grace label in 1956. The Shiraz vines – many now over 140 years old – are among the world's oldest genetic Shiraz plant material. It is remarkable that the vineyard remained intact considering the economic uncertainty and the social conditions of the time. The vineyard is planted on red clay soils overlain by sandy and silty loams interspersed with gravels.

There are several blocks including Grandfather’s Post Office Blocks One and Two, Young which is made up of the younger selected material located near the vines of the old post office, and the Church Block, House Block and Windmill Block. Vintage takes place during mid to late April, each parcel vinified separately to maximise blending options. The Hill of Grace style has developed along Grange lines, but by a circuitous route. Vinification takes place in open headed down fermenters with regular pumping over. Towards dryness the wine is drained and pressed. Partial barrel fermentation in a combination of new American and French oak follows to integrate oak and create complexity. The wine is then allowed to mature in the same oak for a period of about 18 months before bottling and further maturation. 

HILL OF GRACE

Location: Eden Valley wine region, 4 km north-west of Henschke Cellars at Keyneton, in the Barossa Range, South Australia.

Varieties: Shiraz (on own roots). Vines originate from pre-phylloxera material brought from Europe by the early European settlers. Riesling and Semillon.

Wines Produced: Shiraz – individual vineyard bottling since 1958.

Age: Oldest vines planted in 1860s.

Average Yield: 5 tonnes/hectare (2 tonnes/acre)

Soil: Alluvial, sandy loam over clay.

Trellis: 2 wire vertical/single wire at 70 centimetres.

Planting: Wide planting – 3.1 metres x 3.7 metres. Most are planted east-west, some north-south. Dry grown.

Treatments: Tilled and dodged for many years without herbicide. Only copper and sulphur used for foliage sprays. Now mulched and grassed down. Fungus problems are minimal. Vineyard can be considered 'organic'.

Maintenance Quality: Mass selection carried out over two growing seasons. Establishment of a mother source block.

Rainfall: 520 mm

Altitude: 400 metres


Year Vintage Quality Optimum Drinking

1984 Exceptional 20+ years
1985 Exceptional 15+ years
1986 Exceptional 20+ years
1987 Very Good 15+ years
1988 Exceptional 15+ years
1989 Great 15+ years
1990 Exceptional 20+ years
1991 Excellent 20+ years
1992 Excellent 20+ years
1993 Great 15+ years
1994 Exceptional 20+ years
1995 Excellent 20+ years
1996 Exceptional 25+ years
1997 Very Good 15+ years
1998 Exceptional 20+ years
1999 Excellent 20+ years
2000 Not Produced
2001 Excellent 20+ years
2002 Exceptional 25+ years
2003 Great 15+ years
2004 Excellent 20+ years
2005 Exceptional 20+ years
2006 Exceptional 20+ years
2007 Great 20+ years

 

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Vintage 1993

One of the new world's great single vineyard wines, celebrated internationally as much for the heritage of its ancient vines, as for the artisanal craftsmanship and skill of the winemaker. Stephen Henschke has retained the traditional approach to viticulture and vinification as employed by his forefathers. The key to the enduring success for Hill of Grace, comes down to the care of ancestral vineyard blocks and a holistic approach that has been passed down from generation to generation.

Henschke wines were originally high in alcohol and fermented to dry, due to the warmer conditions of the new world vineyards. Henschke's earliest market, required the production of fortified wines for export. Specialization in making fortifieds lasted until the remergence of demand for table wines, through the contribution to Australian culture by post war immigration. The Henschke shift, away from fortified wines laid the foundations for Hill of Grace, as focus fell on the ripeness and quality of its Shiraz.

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Latest Pro-tasting notes

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Written Notes

A difficult start to the growing season with rainfall in 1992 nearly double the average (500mm). It was the wettest year since 1851 and the wettest December recorded for 26 years – 51% of the rainfall falling between September and December. Spring weather therefore was very unpredictable and not particularly conducive to flower or berry set, resulting in below-average yields. Constant rains and high humidity produced ideal conditions for fungal diseases, particularly downy mildew. This caused enormous problems for the Eden Valley growers who are moving towards minimal chemical input viticulture. A severe hailstorm in December reduced the yield to below 25% of the average. A dry, mild summer with vintage approximately one month later than usual. The coolest February since 1954. April’s warm, dry weather encouraged an unexpected rapid ripening of the below-average crop.
  • 84p
A difficult start to the growing season with rainfall in 1992 nearly double the average (500mm). It was the wettest year since 1851 and the wettest December recorded for 26 years – 51% of the rainfall falling between September and December. Spring weather therefore was very unpredictable and not particularly conducive to flower or berry set, resulting in below-average yields. Constant rains and high humidity produced ideal conditions for fungal diseases, particularly downy mildew. This caused enormous problems for the Eden Valley growers who are moving towards minimal chemical input viticulture. A severe hailstorm in December reduced the yield to below 25% of the average. A dry, mild summer with vintage approximately one month later than usual. The coolest February since 1954. April’s warm, dry weather encouraged an unexpected rapid ripening of the below-average crop. Deep crimson colour. Smokey tropical mulberry aromas with touches of herb garden. Quite a soupy contrived wine with mulberry herbgarden flavours, pronounced smoky tropical oak, fine sinewy/leafy tannins finishing firm. A brief period of shade in a decade of sunshine. 16 points (81/100).
  • 81p

Information

Origin

South Australia, Eden Valley

Vintage Quality

Above Average

Other wines from this producer

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Eden Valley Riesling Julius

Eden Valley Semillon Louis

Eden Valley Tillys Vineyard

‘Five Shillings’ Shiraz Mataro

Henry's Seven

Henry's Seven

‘Hill of Peace’ Semillon

‘Hill of Roses’ Shiraz

Lenswood Chardonnay Croft

Lenswood Giles Vineyard Pinot Noir

Lenswood Sauvignon Blanc Coralinga

Mount Edelstone

Noble Gewurztraminer

‘Peggy’s Hill’ Riesling

Pinot Gris Adelaide Hills Littlehampton Innes

Riesling Adelaide Hills Lenswood Greens Hill

Riesling Lenswood Vineyard Greens Hill Vineyard

Shiraz Keyneton Estate

‘The Bootmaker’ Mataro

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81p
 Andrew Caillard MW, Wine Writer (Australia)  tasted  Hill of Grace 1993  ( Henschke )

"A difficult start to the growing season with rainfall in 1992 nearly double the average (500mm). It was the wettest year since 1851 and the wettest December recorded for 26 years – 51% of the rainfall falling between September and December. Spring weather therefore was very unpredictable and not particularly conducive to flower or berry set, resulting in below-average yields. Constant rains and high humidity produced ideal conditions for fungal diseases, particularly downy mildew. This caused enormous problems for the Eden Valley growers who are moving towards minimal chemical input viticulture. A severe hailstorm in December reduced the yield to below 25% of the average. A dry, mild summer with vintage approximately one month later than usual. The coolest February since 1954. April’s warm, dry weather encouraged an unexpected rapid ripening of the below-average crop.


Deep crimson colour. Smokey tropical mulberry aromas with touches of herb garden. Quite a soupy contrived wine with mulberry herbgarden flavours, pronounced smoky tropical oak, fine sinewy/leafy tannins finishing firm. A brief period of shade in a decade of sunshine. 16 points (81/100).
"

2y 3m ago

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