Winery to Watch 2014

McLaren Vale, South Australia: Jauma

A year ago Pascaline Lepeltier of NYC’s Rouge Tomate returned from Australia buzzing about the pet’nat she’d tasted in McLaren Vale. Maybe it was the chenin connection (Lepeltier hails from the Loire), or maybe it was James Erskine’s minimalist approach to winemaking at Jauma that excited her. Curious to know, we asked Lepeltier to write a column on pet’nat (April 2014), and then we were excited ourselves when Jauma’s 2013 Blewitt Springs Pet’Nat showed up in our tastings, a crisp, dry chenin with delicate scents of spring flowers, chamomile and beeswax. Delicious stuff, as is the 2013 McLaren Vale Biggles Grenache. In a sense, this grenache might be more radical, so light in color it looks like a rosé, so delicate, subtle, bright and brisk it might change the way you think about Australian reds.