It was safe to say, I was quite familiar with the Singlefile wines prior to visiting the cellar door. It was actually the Singlefile Fume Blanc which is to be thanked for my addiction to Fume. I picked up a bottle at my local, Chateau Guildford one night and totally swooned over it. It was because of this wine that I HAD to visit the cellar door on my recent trip to Denmark even though it was down a gravel road (if you’ve read my previous Great Southern post, you’ll know that Mr. Spittoon wasn’t so happy about the gravel roads and his ‘baby’ aka the car).
What is Fume Blanc?
Before I delve into what the cellar door is like, I really should explain what a Fume Blanc is. You may have even seen this word floating around your bottle shop as more and more wineries are producing this style of wine. So Fume Blanc is not a grape, it is a name for a style of wine. The grape variety in a Fume Blanc is Sauvignon Blanc and why it differs from your average Sauvy B is that it’s made like the Sauv’s are made in the Pessac-Léognan and Graves sub-regions in Bordeaux, France. Typically you’ll find that a Fume Blanc means the wine has seen some oak age. For instance the Singlefile 2014 Fume, approximately 60% was transferred to oak (30% new Bordeaux barriques, 30% second use) with the remaining 40% completing fermentation in a stainless steel tank for five months on lees. It’s such an interesting process and it creates a wine full of fruit flavours, spice, texture and creaminess.
Honestly, just go out and try it and then you tell me how good it is!
The cellar door…
It’s very pretty driving up to the Singlefile cellar door in Denmark, to the right there is a pretty blue lake and even the geese came out to greet us! Apparently there are 21 geese on the property that ‘waddle single file around the property’. How cute!
The cellar door itself, or ‘The Cellar’ as it’s called has a tasting area and restaurant. The staff were super friendly and happily guided us through a tasting however the only downside for me was the tasting area is right beside the coffee machine – the coffee smelt so good, but unfortunately it overtook the aromas coming out of the glass.
In terms of history, Singlefile started out in 1986 when Phil and Viv Snowden, Geologists from South Africa moved to Perth and began living their dream in the gorgeous Great Southern wine region. They purchased the Singlefile vineyard in 1989 and set out to make world-class Chardonnay and single site wines. With the help of renowned WA Winemaker, Larry Cherubino, Singlefile are producing some super amazing tipples.
What I found really interesting was learning more about the label. It’s not just a pretty label, it actually has a story behind it and that being the family’s international background. There’s a springbok which is the national animal of South Africa, there’s a stag from the emblem of County Clare in Ireland and of course the geese represent the vineyard in Denmark. And the latin wording ‘Semper Superne Nitens’ translates to ‘the pursuit of excellence’. Now there’s a good story behind a label!
As I’ve mentioned above, there are the 2 ranges of wines at the cellar door; the Singlefile range which are small produced, single vineyard wines and then there is the Run Free range which are great value, everyday drinking wines from the Great Southern. I wanted to branch out on this visit and try something new seeing as I have a wee addiction to the Fume, so I skipped it in the tasting and my two favourites at the end of the day were…
Singlefile NV Run Free Serendipity Cuvée Sparkling Wine ($26)
White gold on the eye with aromas of baked apple & orchard fruit pie, grapefruit and a slight touch of floral perfume. On the palate it’s a “ooo that’s yum” bubbles. Literally the first thing to come out of my mouth. Simply gorgeous in every way. I.e. I don’t want to waste anymore time writing this note, so I’m going to get back to drinking!
Singlefile 2014 Denmark Chardonnay ($30)
On the eye this beauty is a mouth-watering yellow with lemon, freshly churned butter and pineapple aromas speeding out of the glass. On the palate it’s fruit sweetness integrated with the oak is a subliminal combination. Pleasure in a glass!
For more tips and tricks, make sure to check out my Great Southern Wine Region Guide here.
Address: 90 Walter Road, Denmark, WA 6333
Phone: (08) 9840 9749
Wines: Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc (normal and Fume Blanc), Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz
Wine tasting cost: Free!
Food available: Yes, see more on Urbanspoon here
Child friendly: I didn’t have a good look around the property, but there is definitely plenty of grass area!