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About Islander Estate

The Islander Estate is a 300 hectare property in the heartland of Kangaroo Island, the property had all the aspects owner and winemaker Jacques Lurton was looking for to setup his vineyard with north facing slopes and heritage vegetation.

The vineyard was planted in 2000 to cabernet franc, malbec, sangiovese, shiraz, grenache, viognier and semillon using close planting techniques for all the varieties except grenache and shiraz. The use of close planting and establishment of bush vines helped to reduce vine vigour and yield, giving grapes and resultant wines great concentration. In terms of soil profile it is quite friable and contains clay that helps with water retention, it comes as no surprise that this soil profile is similar to areas of Jacques native Languedoc-Rousillon region in Southern France.

The estate is equipped with a modern 70-tone winery, with much of the equipment shipped from France, with a balance of tradition and modern wine making techniques employed in the winery.

The climate of Kangaroo Island provides great conditions for growing grapes, with plenty of sunshine and warmth during growing seasons and marked diurnal variation of temperatures allows for a more even and predictable growing season.

About Jacques Lurton

Jacques Lurton is somewhat wine making royalty having worked over 60 vintages across 25 regions within 10 different countries. Jacques graduated from Bordeaux University in 1983 and has been working around the world ever since, but was drawn to Kangaroo Island due to both it's natural beauty and affinity to produce fine wine. I was reading a great article about Jacques and found this quote: "A year ago i was chatting to David Paxton about the difficulty of the wine business and i told him i'm prepared to fight to the death, because the day you have found a place like Kangaroo Island is the day you have found peace and happiness. And that's worth fighting for."

Varietal Focus & Wine Making Techniques

The varieties planted are an eclectic collection of the flagship varieties of France, Italy and Argentina, but what i like most about the wines of The Islander Estate is the mufti-varietal blends that in some instances are less mainstream, but provide superb results.

The blending of wine is something that is not as widely accepted in Australia as it is in other parts of the world, with many wineries proudly stating '100 % Shiraz' or 'Single Vineyard'. In my view it is great to see what Jacques is doing with The Islander, using blending to produce the best wine possible based on his estate fruit.

My thoughts on the wines

As you will see through my notes on the current releases, the wines are excellent, the blending of less commonly paired varieties provides a unique drinking experience and the general class of the releases is seen from the $18 'The Red' and 'The White' all the way through to the premium Investigator Cabernet Franc.

All the reviews can be found here