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Shiraz

Peter Lehmann Stonewell Shiraz 2009

Deep purple-crimson; imposes itself from the first whiff of the expressive bouquet, the first sip of the palate, yet does so with style (and guile); the aromas and flavours are complex, yet seamlessly moulded in a supple display of black and red fruits, the tannins equally supple, the French oak totally integrated and balanced. Drink By: 2035; Price: $100.00; Date Tasted: 24 Jan 2013; Alcohol: 14.2%; Rating: 96 Points; James Halliday

An historic release of Lehmann Stonewell Shiraz in that it’s the first to include Eden Valley-grown grapes in the wine. It’s a substantial contribution too: 30 percent of the wine. “Only the biggest and blackest fruit gets into the taste-off for Stonewell,” Lehmann chief winemaker Andrew Wigan said. “We tasted more than 80 Shiraz components as a team before settling on the top one percent that made that grade. It was a nice surprise to see how the Eden Valley fruit shone.” It’s a beautiful wine in its style. All fruit, dense and black, with very little tannin getting in the way. It has the fruit density of Grange, and yet it’s a thoroughly different style of wine. Before it sounds as though I’m calling this wine structureless; I'm not. Indeed it’s a perfectly well structured and balanced wine. Thick blackberry, smoky/coffeed oak, earth, asphalt and mint. Smooth texture. Admittedly the tannin rises in the wine given time to breathe, and when it does it’s grainy and gritty, redolent of coffee grounds and toast. The linger here, the persistence, is quite exceptional. Alcohol : 14.5% Price : $100 Closure : Screwcap Drink : 2016 - 2028+ Rating: 95+ Points Campbell Mattinson; The Wine Front

Andrew Wigan likens 2009 to 1999: An underrated, unnoticed vintage, sandwiched between two great years. The effect is exacerbated by the sheer magnificence of 2010. 2009’s claim to fame is the first inclusion of Eden Valley fruit in Stonewell, contributing brightness and life. The Stonewell oak regime has been progressively downplayed for decades, and even further here, with less new French oak and less time in barrel. The result is an impressive Stonewell of poise and longevity. As always, it needs at least a decade to come together, and preferably two. An impressively full, vibrant purple hue, there’s great power and concentration on display here, packed with sweet plum and blueberry fruits, lifted with violet perfume and layered with liquorice, dark chocolate and hints of black olives. It’s framed nearly in finely structured, well poised tannins and vibrant, lively acidity, lingering with remarkable persistence. Drink: 2019-2029;Rating: 95 Points; Tyson Stelzer
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Price: $69.99


Peter Lehmann Stonewell Shiraz 2010

In the beginning we made just one Shiraz, the grape variety that has defined the Barossa as one of the world's great wine regions.  But we knew Shiraz that came from some vineyards was better than others - smaller, deeper in colour and more intensely flavoured - 'Little Black Jewels' we called them.  For over 20 years, Stonewell has been lauded as one of Australia's greatest wines and one of the world's greatest Shiraz." - Andrew Wigan

For some perspective on the quality of the 2010 release, the 97 Points from James Halliday is the highest he has ever awarded this wine. Yes, higher than the 96/100 he gave the famed 2008 and higher than the 96/100 given to the '09, '06, '04, '02 and '99 vintages which were considered the best made - until now. Halliday's note in full is:
 
Full crimson purple; while the provenance of the wine ensures there will be an abundance of flavours, there is a tension within the fruit expression that adds an X factor, drawing out the finish and leaving the mouth fresh. All in all a special wine from a special vintage destined for a very long life. Peter Lehmann 5 Star Winery; Alcohol: 14%; Price: $100; Drink to 2050; James Halliday Wine Companion
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Price: $69.99


Peter Lehmann VSV 1885 Shiraz 2010

Ralph and Angela Schrapel manage a small patch of dry grown Shiraz planted by Ralph’s great-great-great grandfather in 1885 in the Ebenezer district. Ralph’s father Lloyd and Peter Lehmann have been close friends for more than 50 years, and the Schrapel family has been a key fruit supplier since the winery’s first vintage. Ralph, like Peter, is now a Baron of the Barossa in his own right for his outstanding contribution to viticulture, which is captured in this special wine.
 
The colour is deep red with a black centre. Aromas of dark chocolate and cherry, which follow through to the richly structured palate and balanced by soft, fine tannins.  This is a limited release old vine Shiraz which provides a link to our ancestors.
 
VSV denotes a very special vintage from a special vineyard. This is a 4-acre block (1.8 ha) planted in 1885 by the Schrapel family (now six generations of residence), matured for 12 months in French oak hogsheads
 
A classic style: a wonderful open spicy and peppery nose with really good intensity. Lovely bright exotic fruit flavours on the palate with rich spice leading the way to a soft creamy mid-palate. The impressive finale is a long, elegant finish. Gold Medal ~ London International Wine & Spirit Competition 2013 
 
Strong, full red-purple; from vines owned by the Schrapel family, whose forebears planted them in 1885. The wine spent 12 months in French oak, which provides a perfect frame for the luscious berry and cherry fruit of the medium-bodied palate. Only 685 dozen made of this seriously lovely wine. Rating: 96 Points; Drink By: 2040; Price: $60.00; Date Tasted: 24 Jan 2013; Alcohol: 14.4%; James Halliday
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Richard Hamilton Shiraz 2012

Richard Hamilton is the fifth generation of his family to be involved in wine production in Australia. The wine is crafted to present excellent fruit definition and length and typifies both the Shiraz fruit and the McLaren Vale region. The Hamilton family celebrated 175 years of involvement in the Australian wine industry in 2012.

Deep dark red with attractive crimson hues. This is a fruit dominant wine showing mint, plum and black pepper. Oak derived spice characters of cinnamon and nutmeg augment the nose. Expect to see cedar characters as the wine matures. A very stylish, medium bodied Shiraz showing soft tannins, lovely sweet fruit and good length with hints of pepper and plum flavours. The wine will best match full flavoured meals, such as tender beef, or full flavoured vegetarian dishes. 

The focus in producing this wine is to have vibrancy of fruit on the nose and palate with a tight structure and attractive mouth filling roundness. The fruit was all grown on our Estate between the McLaren Vale and Willunga townships. Following fermentation on skins, the components were pressed before dryness and allowed some oak fermentation. On the completion of malo-lactic fermentation, the wine was 're-worked' and returned to oak for further maturation. 16 months maturation in 81% French oak, 19% American Oak.
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Price: $15.99

Min. buy 2 bottles
Rockford Basket Press Shiraz 2010

Exceptional Langtons Classification. The Rockford wineworks and apparatus on Krondorf Road at Tanunda date back to the 1850s. The artisanal proprietors employ traditional techniques to assemble one of the nation's most singularly commanding wines. Parcels of the best dry grown old vine Shiraz, some of which were planted in the nineteenth century, from a select cabal of growers, operating vineyards in the Barossa, Kalimna and Ebenezer, Moppa Springs and the Eden Valley, are treated to an ancient basket press followed by vinfication in old fashioned open fermentation vessels.

The batches are matured in a selection of mostly well seasoned French and American oak barrels, before a rigorous selection to determine the final assemblage. Deeply coloured wine. A dense bouquet of aromatic dark fruits and berries with a twist of spice before the most engaging palate of reductions, power and richness over background oak and complex spice.

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Price: $99.99


SBOCA Clairvaux Shiraz 2009

Membership of the St. Bernard’s Old Collegians’ Association is bestowed upon all of those who have attended the School. The Old Collegians is an association run by Old Boys specifically for Old Boys, it is of little surprise to note that the number of Old Collegians taking part in its activities of one kind or another is large and always growing. The Association aims to facilitate commutation, connection and support between all who have had the pride to where the blue, black and gold. This includes providing opportunities for those that have graduated from the college, as well as those that are yet to become ‘Old Collegians’; those boys still currently attending the college.

The SBOCA Clairvaux Shiraz is crafted from quality grapes sourced from selected vineyards in South Eastern Australia. Exhibiting true varietal fruit flavours, the wine is a classic expression of Australia's best red wine variety. Approachable, food friendly and great value, it is a classic varietal expressions with Australian style. This wine is dark crimson in colour, showcasing lush dark berry and plum fruit flavours, with a savoury tannin profile and supportive oak finish. Blended from a number of regions and vineyards, read more...fruit is harvested according to flavour development and vine condition. The wine is aged in oak for 10 months and then bottled prior to the next harvest.

The SBOCA wine series is bottled exclusively for the St Bernards Old Collegians Association and each wine celebrates the artwork of a current or past student. The artist of the 2009 vintage is Matthew Lucente.

All proceeds from the sale of this wine go back to SBOCA.

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Price: $8.99

Min. buy 12 bottles
Saltram The Eighth Maker Shiraz 2002

A personal expression of the Barossa’s fine Shiraz tradition, Saltram’s The Eighth Maker is the embodiment of the proud winemaking heritage established by founder, William Salter, in 1859. Current Senior Winemaker, Nigel Dolan, has  crafted this wine with the influences of the region and the seven Senior Winemakers before him. In a life that has come full circle, the Saltram winery in the Barossa played a significant role at the beginning of Nigel’s life, forming his interests and ideals as the son of a winemaker. Now much later– and as Saltram’s eighth Senior Winemaker– his family, his passions and his vocation are once again irrevocably tied to this winery and the region. The Eighth Maker is personal, intimate and an insight into one Winemaker’s journey for excellence. The Eighth Maker 2002 sets the standard for iconic Australian Shiraz.

The winner of the 2003 Jimmy Watson Trophy, the most hotly contested since the extraordinary 1998 vintage wines competed during 1999. The Eighth Maker 2002 sets a benchmark for others to follow. The Eighth Maker Shiraz 2002 is deep velvet red with rich violet hues in the glass. The aromas present on the nose are, the very essence of Barossa Shiraz. Complex, layered aromas of blackcurrant, liquorice, spice dark berry and cherry continue to develop further complexity on the elegant, complex palate. Subtle French oak notes and refined bottle maturation characters complete this truly magnificent wine.

Jimmy Watson Trophy - 2003 Royal Melbourne Wine Show
Gold Medal - 2003 Royal Melbourne Wine Show

Dedicated to the eight winemakers who have worked at Saltram since 1859 (Peter Lehman was there from 1960 to 1979), this new super-premium Barossa shiraz is deeply coloured with aromas of dark fruits, cedar and vanilla from new French oak and eve n a little star anise. Complex and balanced, ripe, yet not jammy, this intense and concentrated wine also has a good deal of finesse. A wine to put away for at least another 10 years. Australian Financial Review

A super-stylish and contemporary shiraz with all the bells and whistles. Its brambly, smoky aromas of pristine dark cherries, cassis and cedary oak are backed by undertones of smoked bacon and licorice. Silky-smooth and spotless, its sumptuous and harmoniously crafted palate is saturated with flavours of dark berries, plums and dark chocolate, backed by suggestions of smoked meats. Framed by the finest of tannins, it’s exceptionally long and measured, culminating in a slightly salty and savoury finish. (Barossa Valley, $200 retail approx, release April 2006, 19.3/97, drink 2014-2022+) Jeremy Oliver, OnWine

The third vintage of Saltram's flagship Barossa Shiraz, The Eighth Maker, is dense and concentrated... cedary notes mixing with flavours of new leather and dark berries. Layered and persistent, it promises to be around at least until the next generation of Dolans wins another JW (Jimmy Watson Trophy). On the Shelf; Gourmet Traveller Wine

Excellent hue, still purple-red; a prime example of a great, cool vintage in the Barossa; tight, blackberry fruit; long, lingering tannins. Cork. Rating: 94 points. Drink: 2017. 2007 James Halliday Wine Companion

There'll be few better wines released this year than the majestic drop crafted by Nigel Dolan, Saltram's Eighth Maker. Winner of the prestigious 2003 Jimmy Watson Trophy- it’s an absolute belter. Drop of the Week; Kerry Skinner

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Price: was $199.99 now $179.99


Bottles in stock: 7
Scotchmans Hill Shiraz 2012

Scotchmans Hill Bellarine Shiraz has a deep vibrant purple with a purple rim. This wine displays a complex and rich nose with typical cool climate characters of dark fruits, plums and black cherries. This is complemented by white pepper, earth and licorice aromas with a charry oak background. Scotchmans Hill Shiraz is a rich and full flavoured Shiraz delivering complex savoury characters. Dark fruits and red plum flavours, spice and licorice with a touch of briar and a charry oak finish. The wine is supported by firm acid and fine grained tannins which give it length, balance and structure. This elegant wine will cellar well over the next 5 to 8 years 
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Price: $26.99


Seppelt Chalambar Shiraz 2012

Deriving its name from the picturesque Mount Chalambar near Great Western in central Victoria, Seppelt Chalambar Shiraz has an excellent pedigree, having been made since 1953. Originally crafted by the legendary Colin Preece and labelled as Chalambar Burgundy, this wine has become one of the most sought after Seppelt releases each year due to its consistency, quality and value. Sourced from the Grampians and Bendigo regions in Western and Central Victoria, there is a great balance of violets, pepper and spice from the Grampians fruit that provides contrasting elegance to the strength of Bendigo's dark plum fruit.

Seppelt Chalambar Shiraz highlights the benefits of blending these distinctive wine regions. The result is a style that is approachable on release with the structure to age gracefully if carefully cellared. Alcohol 14% 100% Shiraz, 18 months in New and used French oak barriques. Deep and concentrated red with purple hues. Radiant spice lift, bright and floral. Great spice and texture, medium body, bright and fresh with generosity and structure working harmoniously. Showing great length and is detailed in its complexity. A wine showing the hallmarks of a fine vintage in Victoria.
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Price: $17.99

Min. buy 2 bottles
Seppelt St.Peters Shiraz 2010

The flagship wine in the Seppelt portfolio, St Peters is sourced from the finest and most intense estate grown fruit and is the ultimate expression of cool climate Grampians Shiraz. The lineage of this iconic wine dates back to 1964 when Great Western Hermitage was first made. The wine is only made in exceptional years and is now called St Peters after the name of our most historic block of Shiraz. This wine, made in very small quantities, is a carefully balanced medium bodied wine that displays complex flavours reflective of the local terroir.



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Price: $59.99


Sevenhill Inigo Shiraz 2010

With so many wines made from young Shiraz vines, here is a generous Shiraz made from vines up to 140 years old. A return to near average rainfall in 2009 laid the foundation for a favourable 2010 vintage. Although there was little rain in January and February, the fruit ripened evenly. Vintage saw mild, friendly temperatures during February and March, enabling fruit to be picked at optimum ripeness. Sevenhill's irreplaceable, 100-year slate fermenters provide the perfect dimensions for small-batch, hand-plunged fermentation. 

The 2010 Inigo Shiraz has a dense, cherry-black appearance. The palate shows a generous expression of fleshy, ripe plum fruit. A full-bodied wine, the finish has firm but smooth tannins and a spicy note. 

Many of the vines for this highly concentrated powerhouse shiraz are more than 100 years old. They deliver fruit of incredible intensity and richness, which is captured perfectly in this distinctive wine. Lot's of dark earthy plum, savouriness and licorice. It's so rich yet the subtle softness that comes with old vines adds texture and finesse. One for the long term. Rating: 95 Points; Ray Jordan, The West Australian
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Price: $19.99

Min. buy 2 bottles
Shadowfax One Eye Heathcote Shiraz 2004

Shadowfax Heathcote One Eye Shiraz 2004 ($65) screwcap: Good wine. Lots of line and length. Full, dark fruit flavours hang tight to a line of integrated acidity, with chalky, minerally, tongue-hugging tannins holding it all fast. There's a slight background of eucalyptus and sandalwood, but this is a wine keen to keep its cards fairly close to its chest - for now. Drink: 2009-2016. 91 points. Campbell Mattinson; The Wine Front

Firm, dry and unyielding, this closed and sinewy shiraz has a meaty, leathery bouquet whose rather sweet and jammy aromas of red and black berries are backed by earthy and peppery complexity. Its powerful, ferrous and leathery palate of deep, minty fruit finishes rather hard and drying, and should flesh out with time in the bottle. (Heathcote, $65 retail, approx., 17.3/90, drink 2012-2016) Jeremy Oliver

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Price: $59.99


Bottles in stock: 9
Shadowfax Pinkcliffs Heathcote Shiraz 2002

18.7 (95 points); Drink: 2010 - 2014+  Jeremy Oliver

Rich, deep structure; multi-faceted black fruits; full-bodied; ripe tannins, subtle oak influence. Rating: 94 points. Drink: 2027. Price: $70. James Halliday, Wine Companion

Shadowfax Pink Cliffs Heathcote Shiraz 2002 ($67) screwcap: A long sail of fine, mature tannin sets the class of this wine – buy it, put it in the cellar, and forget about it for 10 years. It’s deep and profound, punts jubes and aniseed and mint and minerals the length of your tongue, shows elements of coal throughout, and is never a finger near being over the top. The balance, poise and styling here is impeccable, despite the dreaded mint/eucalypt making an appearance. Drink: 2010-2020. 93 points. Winefront Monthly

The Pink Cliffs is more elegant, sappy, spicy and succulent. At $60-ish a bottle, these are amongst the areas (Heathcote) most expensive wines, but they fully justify the price. Max Allen The Australian Weekend Magazine November 27-28, 2004

Deep crimson red with a bright edge. Pure Shiraz fruit, underlying aromas of five spice, pepper and earth. A highly flavoured wine with intense black fruits, cassis, tar and spice. The tannins are fine and add another dimension of flavour while oak is barely discernible. Bright and taut as a young wine, this is a more savoury expression of Shiraz which needs time in bottle to grow. Cellar for 10+ years.

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Price: $59.99


Bottles in stock: 21
Shadowfax Pinkcliffs Heathcote Shiraz 2004

Firm, linear and substantial, this deeply fruited and powerful shiraz will flesh out over time. Its musky perfume of dark plums, berries and meaty undertones is lifted by heady aromas of pepper and spice. Steeped in sumptuous flavours of black berries, plums and dark chocolate, its brooding and deeply layered palate is framed by a drying cut of powdery astringency, finishing long and savoury. (Heathcote, $65 retail, approx., 18.3/94, drink 2016-2024) Jeremy Oliver

Shadowfax Heathcote Pink Cliffs Shiraz 2004 ($65) screwcap: Far more boisterous and cuddly than the One Eye - this is a velvety mouthful of fun. Blackberries, Ribena, licorice, eucalyptus, cedarwood, all of which flows unfettered towards a long, supple, fruity finish. Perfect balance.  Lovely drink. Drink: 2007-2013. 92 points. Campbell Mattinson; The Wine Front

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Price: $59.99


Bottles in stock: 1
Shaw & Smith Shiraz 2012

The 2012 has lovely fresh aromatics of red berries, which is followed on the palate by intense pure fruit notes including raspberry and blueberry. The palate is long and layered, with ample fine tannins, and background notes of clove and black pepper.

Gold Medal - International Wine Challenge 2014, London.

2012 has given birth to one of the great Shaw + Smith Shirazes, and one of the benchmarks of the Adelaide Hills. Finely textured and immaculately poised, fleshy black cherries, black plums and liquorice unite in an elegantly medium-bodied style accented with layers of black pepper and game, reinforced by a small influence of whole bunch fermentation. Finely textured tannin structure and outstanding persistence point to a confident future. Rating: 96 Points; Tyson Stelzer

2012 Shaw + Smith Adelaide Hills Shiraz Once again this wine delivers plenty. It’s very rich in flavour an deep in colour, reflecting the vintage, but it’s still vibrant and very expressive. There’s a touch of spice and the tannins are fine, but the great strength of the wine is its long silky palate. Rating: Outstanding; Lester Jesberg

Shaw and Smith started in 1989 and has runs on the board aplenty but its best is yet ahead of it. It is building to be a classic Australian wine producer. This 2012 shiraz release adds to that impression. It feels so plush in the mouth. And yet so elegant. And yet so tannic. Generous but bright. Has some pepper. Cherry plum. Oak polishes it up beautifully. Tannin makes a firm strike but then curls out through the finish. Beautifully presented Adelaide Hills shiraz, in all respects. Clean, spicy, fruit-driven, firm. Alcohol : 13.5%; Price : $44; Closure : Screwcap; Drink : 2017 - 2024+Rated : 94+ Points; The Wine Front

Shaw and Smith are arguably best known for their quintessential expression of Sauvignon Blanc and their layered and complex M3 Chardonnay, however their Shiraz continues to impress and highlights the subtlety and fruit driven nature of the best Australian cool climate Shiraz. The 2012 Shiraz was sourced from Balhannah and Macclesfield vineyards with yield's being lower than average, which is certainly evident in the finished wine given the intense red and blue fruit characters. In terms of colour the wine is a medium red with youthful purple hues towards the rim, the nose gives crushed raspberry and savoury cherry fruits that are backed by a suggestion of oak. The palate highlights the fruit driven nature and sheer concentration of the wine, tightly bound and structured red berry fruits are completed by integrated drying tannins; another dimension is added by baking spices and a touch of liquorice on the finish. This wine is just a baby and given time in the bottle will continue to develop secondary characters. A superb wine. Rating: 95 Points; Reviewed by Patrick Eckel; Purchased Grapes

For my money, this has become one of the more anticipated Australian releases each calendar year. The 2006 and 2010 vintages were excellent and this is of a similar standard. When it shows a little black and white pepper you pretty much know it’s on song. Medium-bodied and in a cool climate mode. Violets, raspberry, roast beef and some blue fruits. Dark chocolate and clove oak is already swallowed up. Lithe but not skinny. Proportioned might be the word for it. A seam of mineral acidity and the kind of tight, assertive tannin I wish we saw more of in this country’s Shiraz wines. The score is probably conservative and may need to be revised in three to five years time. It should live quite a bit longer than that as well. Region: Adelaide Hills; Alcohol: 13.5%; Closure: Screwcap; Price: $44; Tasted: November 2013; Rating: 94 Points; Jeremy Pringle

Aromas of flowers, peppery spice, summer berry pudding, and barely there oak herald a silky palate of real concentration. Finely tuned backbone of tannins. (Screw cap; 13.5%) Value Good; Ageing? Yes, two to 10 years. Food ideas Beef fillet; roasted vegetables with cous cous, toasted almonds and dried fruit. Rating: 94 Points; Ralph Kyte-Powell; The Age
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Price: $36.99


Shaw & Smith Shiraz 2012 375ml

The 2012 has lovely fresh aromatics of red berries, which is followed on the palate by intense pure fruit notes including raspberry and blueberry. The palate is long and layered, with ample fine tannins, and background notes of clove and black pepper.
 
Gold Medal - International Wine Challenge 2014, London.
 
2012 has given birth to one of the great Shaw + Smith Shirazes, and one of the benchmarks of the Adelaide Hills. Finely textured and immaculately poised, fleshy black cherries, black plums and liquorice unite in an elegantly medium-bodied style accented with layers of black pepper and game, reinforced by a small influence of whole bunch fermentation. Finely textured tannin structure and outstanding persistence point to a confident future. Rating: 96 Points; Tyson Stelzer
 
2012 Shaw + Smith Adelaide Hills Shiraz Once again this wine delivers plenty. It’s very rich in flavour an deep in colour, reflecting the vintage, but it’s still vibrant and very expressive. There’s a touch of spice and the tannins are fine, but the great strength of the wine is its long silky palate. Rating: Outstanding; Lester Jesberg
 
Shaw and Smith started in 1989 and has runs on the board aplenty but its best is yet ahead of it. It is building to be a classic Australian wine producer. This 2012 shiraz release adds to that impression. It feels so plush in the mouth. And yet so elegant. And yet so tannic. Generous but bright. Has some pepper. Cherry plum. Oak polishes it up beautifully. Tannin makes a firm strike but then curls out through the finish. Beautifully presented Adelaide Hills shiraz, in all respects. Clean, spicy, fruit-driven, firm. Alcohol : 13.5%; Price : $44; Closure : Screwcap; Drink : 2017 - 2024+Rated : 94+ Points; The Wine Front
 
Shaw and Smith are arguably best known for their quintessential expression of Sauvignon Blanc and their layered and complex M3 Chardonnay, however their Shiraz continues to impress and highlights the subtlety and fruit driven nature of the best Australian cool climate Shiraz. The 2012 Shiraz was sourced from Balhannah and Macclesfield vineyards with yield's being lower than average, which is certainly evident in the finished wine given the intense red and blue fruit characters. In terms of colour the wine is a medium red with youthful purple hues towards the rim, the nose gives crushed raspberry and savoury cherry fruits that are backed by a suggestion of oak. The palate highlights the fruit driven nature and sheer concentration of the wine, tightly bound and structured red berry fruits are completed by integrated drying tannins; another dimension is added by baking spices and a touch of liquorice on the finish. This wine is just a baby and given time in the bottle will continue to develop secondary characters. A superb wine. Rating: 95 Points; Reviewed by Patrick Eckel; Purchased Grapes
 
For my money, this has become one of the more anticipated Australian releases each calendar year. The 2006 and 2010 vintages were excellent and this is of a similar standard. When it shows a little black and white pepper you pretty much know it’s on song. Medium-bodied and in a cool climate mode. Violets, raspberry, roast beef and some blue fruits. Dark chocolate and clove oak is already swallowed up. Lithe but not skinny. Proportioned might be the word for it. A seam of mineral acidity and the kind of tight, assertive tannin I wish we saw more of in this country’s Shiraz wines. The score is probably conservative and may need to be revised in three to five years time. It should live quite a bit longer than that as well. Region: Adelaide Hills; Alcohol: 13.5%; Closure: Screwcap; Price: $44; Tasted: November 2013; Rating: 94 Points; Jeremy Pringle
 
Aromas of flowers, peppery spice, summer berry pudding, and barely there oak herald a silky palate of real concentration. Finely tuned backbone of tannins. (Screw cap; 13.5%) Value Good; Ageing? Yes, two to 10 years. Food ideas Beef fillet; roasted vegetables with cous cous, toasted almonds and dried fruit. Rating: 94 Points; Ralph Kyte-Powell; The Age
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Price: $21.99

Min. buy 3 bottles
Snake & Herring Business Time Shiraz 2011

Deep, bright purple-crimson; built to live and evolve over decades; given prolonged time on skins post fermentation and aged for 17 months in 38% new French oak puncheons. It is unashamedly full-bodied, with layer-upon-layer of plum, licorice/anise and quality oak, the tannins ripe, but to the fore right now. Rating: 96 Points James Halliday

95 Points Ray Jordan

Exotic spice, black fruit, meat, pepper, dark chocolate – abundant display of regionality here. Medium bodied, young and unevolved, with chewy furry tannin, ample volume of dark cherry flavour and particularly attractive unforced acidity. Sensitive oak treatment too. Savoury, meaty and long. Heaps of charisma and maybe a few tricks left. Rating: 92+ Points Gary Walsh
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Price: $29.99

Min. buy 2 bottles
Spinifex Indigene Mataro Shiraz 2012

Mataro/Shiraz. As always, Indigene is based on the Barossa's wonderful resource of old-vine Mataro (aka Mourvèdre) sourced from tiny pockets of vines on the region's eastern fringes. The final cut was drawn from five parcels of Shiraz and two of Mataro. The three Barossa sites, Moppa's quartz shot clay, Bethany and Eastern foothills, bring opulent ballast counterbalanced by the fragrance and freshness of the Eden Valleys component (drawn from the High Eden at 550 metres and Moculta, see below for more details on this site). The Mataro comes from two sites including old vines rooted in the deep sands of Vine Vale and from Ebenezer. Across these sites, vines range from 20 to 90 years old, with an impressively high average of 70 years. Each variety is treated separately; the Mataro is fermented with foot-crushed bunches and raised in large format oak to preserve its subtle aromatics. The Shiraz sees 20 per cent whole bunch, some mature barrique and a single 600 litre demi muid. The final blend is bottled without fining or filtration.

Pete rates this as the "most elegant Indigene we have knocked out." Right off the bat it's amazingly aromatic with lots of savoury, fresh meat, and iodine notes on the nose. The palate is super pure with pristine raspberry, anise, crushed poppy seeds, pepper, and cedar notes. Again those hints of fresh, clean meat in the background. Lovely rocky tannins. Another unbelievably classy and elegant wine. It's ripe, but very fresh and without any alcohol sweetness, reflecting the balance of the 2012 vintage. Supple and pulpy texture, with notes of red fruits and wild herbs, fine tannins and a perfumed finish. More feminine than the 2010 - that is, more perfumed, cooler and graceful. Just a wonderful wine.

Spritely perfume, rose petal, exotic spice, meaty characters. Firm texture, racy in red and black fruit, composed - certainly shows the crisp acidity and freshness of the winemaking, but also a depth of vinosity that says something more is happening here. Impressive in form and length, this really is a super wine, in vogue of the 'lighter side of Barossa' but with detail, precision and finesse in tow. What a wine. Rating: 95 Points, Mike Bennie, The Wine Front

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Price: $54.99


Spinifex La Maline Shiraz Viognier 2008

Ten of the best new wineries: Wow what an impressive newcomer this is, owned by New Zealand-born Peter Schell and French-born wife Magali Gely. After graduation from Roseworthy they worked for four vintages in the south of France, and when they established Spinifex, it was only natural to focus on Mourvèdre, Grenache, Shiraz and Cinsault. Great wine and immaculate packaging is a heady mixture... So far as I am concerned Spinifex out-Torbrecks Torbreck. James Halliday

Barossa & Eden Valleys; Shiraz 94%; Viognier 6%; Vivid, deep garnet with blue hues. The nose is bright and lifted with sweet blackberries, dark rose petals, crème de cassis, ripe raspberries, praline, bitter chocolate, coffee, earth and subtle wood smoke/toast with a hint of jasmine tea. A full bodied wine displaying complex flavours that range through red plum, ripe raspberry and subtle wood spice. The palate is tightly structured with a bright long finish. Although drinking beautifully now, cellaring will reward. (Diam cork closure)

It’s labelled Barossa and so it is, but it’s 63 percent Eden Valley, 32 percent Barossa Valley, 4 percent Adelaide Hills and 1 percent undisclosed. The viognier component makes up 4 percent. Figured as much. Lovely wine. Viognier is quite prominent aromatically and yet it’s dry and elegant to taste. Long sheets of tannin, flavours of blueberry jam, notes of earth and aniseed and a spicy, smoky aftertaste. Easy to drink and yet taut and controlled throughout. As with so many 2008 reds from the Barossa … I keep wanting just a little more length. Rated : 92 Points Alcohol : 14.5% Price : $48 Closure : Screwcap Drink : 2012 - 2018 By Campbell Mattinson; The Wine Front

Good purple-red, although not particularly vibrant; a very rich and complex wine, texture and structure excellent; the bouquet is aromatic and the full-bodied palate has abundant fruit, but this blend (Shiraz/Viognier) best delivers vibrancy in cool climates. 94 Points; James Halliday

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Price: $54.99


Spinifex La Maline Shiraz Viognier 2012

La Maline is the moniker (pre-2008) for the former "Shiraz/Viognier". In fact, from 2010 Pete has dropped the Viognier component entirely believing the ripeness and sweet fruit that this variety delivered in 2010 didn't fit the restrained, yet flirtatious, style of La Maline. Instead, this year, Pete co-fermented the Shiraz with a touch (2-3%) of Barossa Roussanne, a variety that is of increasing interest to this grower. The red grapes comes from a selection of old vines - up to 80/90 years in some plots - grown in the Eden Valley and Barossa Ranges including fruit from the brilliant, rocky vineyard that produced 2009's Vallée des Roche. These cool, elevated sites bring this cuvée lovely, lifted aromas of crushed red plum, black raspberry and beautiful violet notes. The Roussanne adds intriguing aromatics of ginger spice. Naturally balanced, the palate is super fine, pure and delineated. Lovely, powdery tannins kick in at the back driving the wine to another level. This has roughly 20% new oak. Pete uses the thick stave Tronçais 'Magic Cask' barrels from Dominique Laurent's artisanal cooperage, for this cuvee which has been sumptuously folded into the old vine fruit during the long, slow maturation.

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Price: $54.99


St Hallett Old Block Shiraz 2005

Finely crafted and harmoniously balanced, with a juicy presence of blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, cassis and dark plums tightly knit with sweet, gamey chocolate-like oak and underpinned by fine, crunchy tannin. It's spicy and aromatic, laced throughout by nuances of cloves and cinnamon. Long and vibrant, it finishes with lingering dark fruits and a bright acidity. 94 points; Jeremy Oliver

It pumps out sweet dark fruit backed with liberal toasty oak which, it must be said, smells alarmingly like a meat lovers pizza replete with BBQ sauce. There’s a menthol and floral perfume floating above it all too. In the mouth full bodied and dramatic with lashings of sweet black and red fruit, spicy clove and toast oak, aniseed and some more earthy flavours - almost overbearing in the amount of sweet (fruit) and savoury (oak) flavour it delivers. There’s also smooth ultra-fine grained (but firm) tannin, good freshness and excellent length of flavour. 94 points; Gary Walsh, The Wine Front

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Price: $69.99


Starlite Barossa Valley Shiraz 2009

Frustrated by the price creep of particularly, 'big company' wines, we set out to make the best possible example of an approachable, fruit driven and vibrant Australian Shiraz while keeping the resultant cost 'real' - this being the brief for all Starlite Wines produced by WineStar. The decision to source fruit from the Barossa Valley was an easy one given this famous region provides the complexity yet approachability of the style of Shiraz we were seeking. We specifically targeted Lyndoch for our fruit source.

The 2009 vintage began with an unusual cool December which also provided good rain. This was very much appreciated following burst of heat in mid-January and another at the end of the month. The balance was restored with some cooler nights which allowed steady ripening and flavour definition. Vintage began early, in the second week of February which allowed excellent balance between ripeness and acidity. The wine saw some subtle oak handling with a combination of new and seasoned, both French and American oak for one year.

The Starlite Barossa Valley Shiraz 2009 is a bright and youthful purple colour. The nose represents all that is great about Barossa Shiraz with dark cherry, raspberry and spice aromas that are packaged in a lifted aromatic vibrancy. The luscious fruit flavours continue in the mouth with a juicy undertone of luscious bright and ripe red fruits, combined with the gentlest of oak influences and a medium bodied and rounded palate. Will drink over the next five years but gorgeous right about now!

Looks good, tastes good..and the the price is right – come on down. Plum cake and bramble fruit, dried mint and pot pourri, iron filings and a general spicy sauciness. It’s medium to full bodied with a juicy red fruited flavour – almost to dried cranberry – a light dry furry tannic grip (though a friendly one) and a little dried herb on the finish. Has good shape and control, but  rolls along smoothly and drinks with effortless ease. Spot on. Rated : 91 Points Tasted : Nov11 Alcohol : 14% Price : $16.99 Closure : Screwcap Drink : 2011 - 2015; By Gary Walsh; The Wine Front

The star of Starlite, a stonking new bargain range from WineStar. Capturing the rich, juicy, succulent generosity of the Barossa while maintaining a poise, freshness and fruit purity – a tough balancing act and it’s taken one of the Barossa’s most talented makers to pull it off. Get on board the Starlite express!  91 Points Tyson Stelzer, Wine Taste.

Bargain of the Week: Huon Hooke, Sydney Morning Herald
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Price: $12.99

Min. buy 3 bottles
Tahbilk Shiraz 2008 1500ml Magnum

Good rugged shiraz which can often be found at a very keen price. Some nutty oak, spice and pepper, eucalyptus, plum and mixed berries – a licorice richness evolving with air. It’s medium to full bodied and ‘technical tasters’ may quibble with the slightly dessicated tannin and baked fruit flavour profile, but there’s rugged charm and interest here too. The Cabernet is the better wine this vintage, but over the short to medium term this will provide a good amount of pleasure. Give it a little decant before serving. Rated : 90 Points; Tasted : Jul11 Alcohol : 14.5% Closure : Screwcap Drink : 2011 - 2016; Gary Walsh; The Wine Front

A darker, rich and ripe, full-bodied style with mulberry-like fruit, mocha and background suggestions of mint, the palate nicely rounded, balanced and firmly structured and with a pedigree to age long term. Graeme Phillips – Sunday Tasmanian

Another lovely red from this historic winery, this shows dark berry fruit, white pepper, spice and licorice on the nose and palate, with restrained oak and fine, firm tannins on the finish. Enjoy now with a good steak or rich lamb stew but if you have the patience another decade in the cellar will provide ample returns. Mike Frost – Brisbane Courier Mail

The 2008 Shiraz reveals a deep garnet-purple colour and notes of dried plums, blackberry and black cherry preserves and mulberries over chocolate, aniseed, tar and damp earth. Very crisp and full bodied in the mouth, it provides firm, tight-knit tannins and a good amount of black berry and earthy flavours that linger long onto the finish. Lisa Peroti-Brown, MW – eRobertParker.com

Tahbilk’s reds rarely disappoint, and the consistency continues with this release. It’s a wine of good personality and character, too. It’s packed with enticing aromas of blackberry, dark cherry, plum, eucalypt and liquorice. Ripe, rich flavours of dark berries, plum and spice liquorice aren’t too big and bold. Chunky tannins drive the flavour while bright acid keeps things light. There’s a good finish to this, too, with ripe dark-fruit flavours and liquorice. Food match - Rare roast beef; Ben Thomas; Melbourne Weekly
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Price: $34.99

Min. buy 6 bottles
Te Mata Bullnose Syrah 2011

Full, even, purple-hued ruby-red colour. This has an elegantly full and voluminous bouquet that reveals aromas of dark red berry fruits, dark red florals, white and black pepper and spices that are seamlessly entwined, building to form an intensely concentrated core. Medium-full bodied, the palate is extremely elegant in proportion with velvety smooth and finely extracted tannins. Lifted dark red berry fruits, florals, white and black peppercorns flow with a gentle juiciness and spicy richness. Oaking is very subtle and sensitive adding nuances to the spice. Poised acidity enlivens the fruit expression. This is seamless and the wine has excellent drive and line leading to a very long, lingering finish with spice and floral elements. This is a very elegant and fine-featured Syrah with seamless pepper and spices flavours. Serve with Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisine over the next 5-6 years. 100% Syrah fruit from the ‘Bullnose' vineyard fermented to 13.0% alc., the wine aged 15 months in new and seasoned French oak barrels. 18.5/20 Dec 2012 RRP $49.00  Raymond Chan Wine Reviews
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Price: $42.99


Teusner Avatar Grenache Shiraz Mataro 2012

Often referred to as the big brother to our un-oaked Joshua GMS, the 2012 Avatar release has a little more Shiraz in the blend than other recent vintages and we consider it our stand out wine of the vintage. Grenache still dominates the blend with spice and red-fruited lift and Mataro adds earthiness and some resounding bass notes. A blend of Grenache 40%, Shiraz 30% Mataro 30%; The Avatar sees approximately 12 months in seasoned French and American oak…we work on the premise that oak should be a seasoning to add complexity and savoury nuance to a wine and it should never dominate the fruit. With vines that average 90 years of age, we want the fruit and earth to speak with the clearest voice. Medium-bodied with great definition, fruit clarity and a lovely seam of bright acidity, the 2012 Avatar is a wine that we are very pleased with….and we are sure you will be too. Teusner 

The 2012 Avatar shows a generous, expressive bouquet with plum and black cherry aromas with a splash of higher toned cranberry. Underlying the ripe fruit you’ll find hints of Asian spice, dried citrus peel, licorice, gingerbread, milk chocolate, jasmine and notes of well-integrated mocha oak. Vibrant, well-weighted and spice-laden on the initial entry to the palate, the Avatar shows ripe fruit flavours of plum, blackberry and black cherry with hints of raspberry and cranberry providing lift. There are hints of Asian and baking spice, ginger-cake, chocolate, dried flowers, licorice and judicious, seasoned oak along with a healthy dose of earthy, Mataro goodness. Medium-bodied on the palate the wine wraps up with great balance, bright acidity, supple, ripe tannins and a finish that is both persistent and spicy. Enjoy the 2012 Teusner Avatar over the next 5-8 years.

A 40/30/30% blend of grenache, mataro and shiraz from 90-year-old vines, which spent 12 months in used oak. Bright crimson-purple; the aromas and flavours of this beautifully balanced and structured medium-bodied wine have plum to the fore one moment, black cherry the next, supple and ripe tannins providing a discrete framework for this precocious display of fruit. Rating: 95 Points;  Drink By: 2022; Price: $35.00; Date Tasted: 03 Jul 2013; Alcohol: 14.5%; James Halliday Wine Companion

Well if the 2012 Joshua was the best they’ve yet made, then I reckon this might be too. Grenache 40%, Shiraz 30% Mataro 30%; This may well be about as good as Barossa GSM gets? Strong colour leads into a deliciously aromatic and tasty wine. Hazelnut, floral notes, iron, boysenberry, cherry pips and a hard-to-describe-sensibly sensation of what might best be called ‘stony’. Medium bodied with bell clear fine acidity and equally fine tannin. Serious length. And for all those serious bits, still just so irresistibly yum. You’re having your cake and eating it here. Rated : 95 Points Tasted : Mar13 Alcohol : 14.5% Price : $30 Closure : Screwcap Drink : 2013 - 2020 Gary Walsh; The Wine Front

I had an interesting discussion with Kym Teusner this year on blends and the history of the Joshua and the Avatar. Both were first made in 2002, a couple of years before the juggernaut of the Riebke Shiraz “came and got in the way” [said with a wry chuckle]. Kym and Michael Page love their blends and they worked hard to get them established early on. It’s paid off big time. I also asked whether the use of a moniker without reference to varieties was a conscious choice? “Our distributors get into us every day about it, but yeah it was a conscious decision. Put the word Grenache on something and it instantly becomes hard to get people to taste it.” In time the Australian wine scene will be grateful for the hard-nosed approach taken.

And now to undo all their work I’ll let you know it’s a blend of 40% Grenache, 30% Shiraz and 30% Mataro that spends about ten months in French and American oak – savoury oak it is too, adding structure, texture and a mocha character to the back-palate. Wonderfully aromatic. Lavender, cherries, raspberries, anise, dried orange peel, ferrous earth and chocolate coated ginger. The architecture is stunning. Cranberry accented acidity and ripe, graphite/mineral tannin. It moves from entry to exit without any interruption and the extension is remarkable. Has juicy fruit flavours but it’s ultimately a savoury wine. The Mataro’s Asian spice character lingers as an aftertaste. Terrific now and has the potential to be even more special in the years to come. Rating: 95+ Points; Excellent – Exceptional; Region: Barossa Valley; Alcohol: 14.5%; Closure: Screwcap; Price: $35; Tasted: March 2013; Jeremy Pringle; Wine Will Eat Itself

Kym Teusner considers Avatar his standout wine of an outstanding season. There’s a little more shiraz in the blend than usual this year, (30%), but grenache retains the lead (40%), with strong support from mataro (30%), all from vines averaging an incredible 90 years of age. The result is an incredible expression of red and black fruits of all kinds, with hints of mixed spice and orange rind, framed carefully in dark chocolate from seasoned French and American oak. It’s all delightfully composed, intricately interwoven with a mesh of finely structured, softly textured tannins, impeccably polished and ready to go. Wow, this is one of the great Avatars. Drink:  2013-2020; Rating: 95 Points; Tyson Stelzer; Wine Taste
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Price: $24.99


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