Jauma 'Danby' 2022
From a (now organic) site taken over by Dave Gartlemann in 2020, this Grenache fruit is grown on red clay spliced through with shale shards. The fruit saw 100% carbonic fermentation in tank before it was racked to rest further in stainless steel tanks. Full of raspberries and Christmas spices, in James' own words, it is "so delicious". Imbibo
Variety - Grenache
Country - Australia
Region - South Australia
Sub Region - McLaren Vale, Sellicks Hill
Extra - Crown Seal
Year - 2022
Volume - 750ml
James Erskine has a list of qualifications, experience and achievements as long as your arm. After studying to be a chef, followed by a move to Germany to work as a sommelier and a stint in Austria making wine, he returned to Australia where he completed an honours degree in Agricultural Science while working in some of Adelaide’s best restaurants. After some further study at the prestigious UC Davis in the USA, James again returned home to Adelaide to work full-time as a sommelier. During this time, he was awarded the Gourmet Wine Traveller Sommelier of the Year Award, co-duxed the Court of Master Sommelier exams, won the Working With Wine Fellowship and was a Len Evans Scholar – bloody hell!
But the allure of winemaking proved too strong and he left his burgeoning somm career to make wine in his home state. He spent some time working with the Bowe Lees team in the Adelaide Hills, where he met Anton Von Klopper (Lucy M) and did some moonlighting for Pete Schell (Spinifex). Then in 2010, he started Jauma and the rest is history!
Fast forward to today and Jauma is firing on all cylinders: 100% McLaren Vale, 100% natural and 100% organic practices; zero sulphur, zero additions, zero fining and zero filtration... But we don't just want to talk about S02 (or lack there of), you need to know about the sites! James works with five vineyards across McLaren Vale, each one meticulously and organically managed by one of two viticulturalists (Fiona Wood and David Gartlemann) James has worked with for many years. Their express aim is to preserve the vines for 100 years or more, so every resource is deployed to organic farming and soil maintenance, ensuring the longevity of the sites that they work with.
In the winery, James puts a huge amount of focus and energy into how he can do nothing. Anyone who knows about winemaking will tell you this takes more thinking and hard work than commercial winemaking. He gently coaxes the greatest expression he can from each vineyard without imposing on the fruit. He’s a sucker for texture, something clear as day in his wines, so skin contact is used extensively as well as a myriad of vessels: amphora, steel, wood and fibreglass. There are no additions whatsoever... None... Ever. These are the epitome of earth-to-glass wines: clean, pure and so expressive of site. IMBIBO