Mitolo ‘Savitar’ McLaren Vale Shiraz
Mitolo has a cult following in Australia, and is reputed to produces some of the finest wines in the Barossa Valley. The Mitolo Family arrived in Australia in the 1950’s, with the Father of the actual owner, Franck Mitolo, starting the farms planting crops (mostly potatoes) and just a little bit of grapes; when Franck took over in 1995, he converted the all estate in vineyards, grown in a sustainable manners (no chemical used), and quickly rose to his fame by focusing on crafted small batches of high-quality wines only.
‘Savitar’ is a mythical dragon-like monster, and this wine is so named because of the impression Frank Mitolo and Ben Glaetzer had upon tasting one particular lot in the Willunga vineyard. They were so blown away they decided to make a Shiraz from just the small lot, and Savitar was created.
Each parcel of fruit for Savitar was fermented on skins for 15 days. This slightly longer time on the skins ensures a tighter overall structure setting the framework for elongated aging. Following fermentation, the wine is pressed, and then transferred to oak barrels for maturation. Aged in 100% new medium to light toasted barrels (100% French oak for 18 months before individual barrels are carefully selected for the final blend.
Savitar, the flagship Mitolo Shiraz, is powerful yet elegant, opulent, brooding and intense. Immense lift, the aromatics are an incredibly intense amalgam of blackcurrant, menthol, licorice and cedar oak. The palate shows a hugely complex flavor profile befitting of its pedigree. Characters of black fruits, dried herbs, and earthy tones of licorice and savory leather.
When the Mitolo family arrived in Australia in the 1950s they brought their viticulturist ancestry and an ethos belonging to the Abruzzo region – forte e gentile. The family worked hard to become successful market gardeners while staying true to their origins where food and wine, family and friends, laughter and celebration were an integral part of life. After years of working in his family’s potato business, Frank Mitolo started making wine for family and friends.
In 1999, after a now legendary 5-hour discussion with winemaker Ben Glaetzer, the pair fashioned a dream of making the ultimate expression of McLaren Vale’s rich provenance of soils. They jotted a six word business plan on the back of a napkin: individuality, integrity, quality, purity, elegance and power. The first Mitolo wine, the 2000 G.A.M. Shiraz was named after Frank’s children Gemma, Alex and Marco. Since then Mitolo have added another 10 wines to the range each with its own distinct personality and story.
The winery works closely with its growers, the Loprestis. The Loprestis, also Italian immigrants and old friends of the Mitolos, have an affinity with their land, producing fruit of the highest quality. The fruit is the essence of Mitolo, with a depth of flavour garnered from heavy clay soils, yet freshness thanks to the gentle afternoon sea breeze. In the winery, Ben takes a ‘hands-off’ approach, fermenting cool to retain purity, and using a range of barrel coopers to generate complexity yet respect and enhance the fruit.
The Mitolo Italian heritage runs strongly through the range using the Italian varietals and techniques. Business meetings are still held over Sunday lunch with traditional Italian food and of course Mitolo wine shared with friends, old and new. And at the heart of it all, in the wine style, in the people, is the motto that the Mitolo’s brought from Abruzzo – ‘forte a gentile: strong and gentle‘.
Syrah / Shiraz & blends