Frank Cornelissen Susucaru 2018, IGT
Sometimes I forget to buy the wines I love. I spend so much time tasting and writing, that I don’t have a lot of time to track down the wines I’m interested in. Not everything that I love ends up in front of me: a fair bit of it needs chasing down and this Susucaru is one of those wines. I’ve recently spent a bit of time in the Boatshed Wine Loft in Cottesloe. It’s a dangerous place for me… the selection isn’t so big as to be unwieldy, the wines they have are often hard (or just exciting) to find and there’s a lot in there that if I was made of money I can assure you: they’d be coming back to my place. So I’ve found myself in there three times in three weeks, and Susucaru has been a repeat purchase.
Nerello Mascalese (85%), the balance being a blend of Nerello Capuccio, Allicante Boushet, Minella Nera, Uva Francesa and Minella Bianco.
A bit about the production: Organic, volcanic soils, destemmed, gentle press, 60 day spontaneous fermentation in epoxy tanks with indigenous yeasts, aged in epoxy tanks, no added SO2, filtered from the 2018 vintage onwards (3 micron cartridges), 12% alc.
Spicy and fine, this has all kinds of different characters on the nose, bitter orange peel, black cherry, exotic spice… it is elegant and engaging and is a combination of utterly smashable, and incredibly nuanced. I’ll admit the first time I tried it I was so taken by how delicious it was that I discarded my efforts at a formal note and just enjoyed it. Not a common occurrence. Going back to it the following day to finish what I started (albeit with a sore head), I saw all sorts of things that I missed the night before. Sarsaparilla, thyme, white pepper, loads of volcanic minerality – a crushed slate, shale sort of vibe – fresh ground nutmeg, black pepper… hints of liquorice root, juniper, sandalwood… the fruit on the palate is fine but fleshy, but it’s edgy too so there’s texture and grit and its awesome. The point is the wine, for all its complex flavour characters is incredibly tasty and I loved it so much I bought more of it. I’m just disappointed there were no magnums. Next time…