Winemaker Lunch @ The Last Wine Bar with Hayes Family Wines

A week after we waved goodbye to one winemaker, we prepare for the arrival of another. This time, from farther afield – Brett Hayes, producer of small batch organic wines in Barossa Valley, Australia, is coming to Norwich.

Hayes Family Wines was founded in 2014, when Brett and Kylie bought a vineyard planted with old bush vine Grenache, Shiraz and Mataro. With a mere 6 hectares of vines, Brett is the smallest producer with whom we work, and makes distinctive, concentrated and geographically expressive wines, often in such small volumes that each bottle is numbered.

For anyone interested in the history of the vine, Barossa Valley is a unique case study, as it has the largest concentration of old, ungrafted vines anywhere in the wine producing world. Far from being a “New World” region, South Australia offers us a glimpse of wine as it might have been 130 years ago – before the deadly vine disease phylloxera, inadvertently imported from America by Victorian botanists, nibbled away at European vine roots, before devastated vineyards worldwide… except in the sandy soils of Barossa.

As ‘deep sea’ wine importing to the UK is dominated by large companies, we can get the false impression that Australian wine is an expression of big business.

But when we were travelling there, we enjoyed a vibrant and unpretentious wine culture, with lots of small scale production, and a public willing to invest in good wine. Few engaged drinkers chose Penfolds; and Jacob’s Creek is reserved for the Americans – and for the British.

The other oft-repeated maxim in the UK is that, like the French, the Aussies ‘save the best stuff for themselves’. But this may be due to Brits being reluctant to pay for the good stuff rather than the Aussies being unwilling to ship it.

It’s true that almost all of Brett’s wine are drank in Australia, save for a small Japanese export market – and an even smaller one in East Anglia.

June 12th will be a rare chance indeed to taste Brett’s wines in the company of the man himself. We will be cracking open all six of the wines we imported, to showcase the variety and creativity at the heart of the estate.

MENU

Adelaide Hills Blancs de Noir 2019 (12.5% abv) 

Cromer Crab, asparagus, quails egg, spiced crab mayo or

Tempura courgette flower, whipped st Jude’s curd, truffle honey

Barossa Valley Semillon 2020 (12%) 

Hake fillet, dill butter sauce, rainbow chard, remoulade, flaked almond  or

Roasted sweet potato, smoked tahini dressing, flaked almonds, Norfolk white lady 

Barossa Valley Rouge 2019 (14%) &
Grenache / Shiraz /Mataro Field Blend 2019 (14%)  
Ox cheek donut, chilli, garlic chives, crispy onion, oyster emulsion or
Norfolk shiitake donut, Mushroom custard, marmite powder, pecorino  

Grenache Block 12 2020 (14%)
Stone Well Estate Shiraz 2019 (14%)
Hevingham lamb, blackcurrant reduction, purple sprouting, pressed potato or
Brown butter roasted cauliflower, rarebit, hazelnuts, rainbow chard

Ticket Type Price Qty. Cart
Winemaker Lunch Ticket £70.00

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