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Alpha Box & Dice ‘Xola’ Aglianico, McLaren Vale 2014

ABD111

Alpha Box & Dice

The Xola is our study on duality in wine. In the South American Andes the concept of Yanatin abounds with the indigenous people adhering to a philosophical model based in what is often referred to as a “dualism of complementary terms” or, simply, a “complementary dualism”. As William Blake says, “Opposition is true friendship”… The opposites of existence, dark/light, male/female, inner/outer are viewed as interdependent and essential parts of a harmonious whole. Tannin is the dark; the masculine… in its youth Aglianico (ahl-YAH-nee-ko) certainly has it’s fair share of tannin heft and muscle, requiring an extended time in seasoned oak barrels to relax, become comfortable with itself and display the harmonious characters we seek.

Meet the producer

A modern, cutting-edge collection of wines - just look at the labels - from the passionate and slightly bonkers trio of...

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Production

Grapes are grown on the Leask Vineyard, McLaren Vale, a red clay soil site which is biodynamic, but biodynamic practises not carried through winemaking. Aglianico is a notoriously late ripener and isn’t picked until late April-early May. Grapes are de-stemmed and innoculated with neutral yeast. Extended maceration (extended time on skins) then the wine spends 36 months in seasoned oak and a further two year in bottle before release.

Tasting notes

Immediate nose of beetroot juice poured over graphite shavings sets you up for quite a journey. The palate shares the same dense minerality and graphite texture as the nose with a quiet but growing presence of forest floor and frozen berries. On opening, this fruit thaws to release fresh summer pudding and cream served in a pencil case. Bonkers!

Food match

Chargrilled meats.

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