Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - 84

YEAR'S BEST AUSTRALIAN SHIRAZ
92 | Kilikanoon

$235

2013 Clare Valley Attunga 1865 Shiraz ^ The
windy forest-cool of Clare comes through in
this wine from a block of 900 ancient vines.
It feels generous, a healthy, clean, fragrant,
black-fruited shiraz with staying power.
Patient cellaring will reveal its flavor complexity. § Old Bridge Cellars, Napa, CA
119844

92 | Schild Estate

$46

2012 Barossa Valley Ben Schild Reserve
Single Vineyard Shiraz ^ Named for the
estate's founder, this reserve grows at a parcel in the hills above Lyndoch. The fruit ferments in small open-top vats, then the wine
ages in a combination of French, American and Hungarian oak for two years, and
another two years in bottle before release.
This tastes like an old-fashioned Barossa
shiraz, with anise and pomegranate notes in
the fragrance, its freshness mixed with just a
hint of dimpled fruit. Lively and charming
in its balance of complex black tannins and
touches of sweetness, this should age well.
(W&S 2/17) § USA Wine West, Sausalito, CA
119611

92 | St Hallett

$70

92 | Thistledown

$35

2012 Barossa Valley Old Block Shiraz ^
This is sourced from own-rooted vineyards
in Barossa and Eden Valley, their average age
closing in on 90 years. That old-vine concentration comes through in a wine with heady
complexity, with flavor length equal to its
depth. It ranges from bass notes of tar to high
notes of tart strawberries and fresh blackberries, the flavors rich and clean. Easy to appreciate now, this will provide more satisfaction
when it's eight to ten years old. (W&S 2/17) §
Distinguished Vyds., Overland Park, KS
119518
2014 Barossa Valley The Basket Case Shiraz ^ Peter Leske heads up the Thistledown
team in South Australia, in partnership with
two UK-based MWs, Giles Cooke and Fergal
Tynan. Their goal is to harvest fruit as it's just
about ripe, well before it begins to dimple.
This wine comes from vineyards throughout Barossa that they caught when the fruit
was still as red-scented as cherries, the tannins just turning toward suppleness. There's
a juicy, herbal tobacco note and a bitumenblack edge to the tannins, sharing some of
the compelling tarry bitterness of nebbiolo
tannins in a young Barolo. Finely integrated
without losing its rustic charm, this is tart
and lovely Barossa shiraz. (W&S 2/17) § Wine
Dogs, Brooklyn, NY

84

WINE & SPIRITS

OCTOBER 2017

120651

92 | Thorn-Clarke

$23

2015 Barossa Valley Shotfire Shiraz (Best
Buy) ^ The Clarke family farms 670 acres of
vines in the Barossa and Eden valleys, which
provide most of the fruit for its wines, including this blend from three vineyards. Shotfire
isn't particularly complex, but it's satisfying
and it hews to a classical profile of Barossa
shiraz: With scents of baking spices against
earthy red fruit, this feels markedly cool and
brisk. Decant it for flank steak or sautéed
calf 's liver with onions. § Kysela Père et Fils,
Winchester, VA
119054

92 | Yalumba

$45

2013 Barossa Valley Paradox Shiraz ^
Focused on northern Barossa, this ferments
without added yeast or temperature control
in traditional open-top vats, then ages in 500liter French oak puncheons, 14 percent new.
It's tight and floral, with some salinity that
points up the wine's freshness. That saltiness
holds on as the flavors open to black fruit and
a meaty, carnal edge, the floral notes turning toward violets and anise. Round and delicious in its lively Barossa blackness, this will
benefit from age, or from the company of a
seared sirloin steak. (W&S 2/17) § Negociants
USA, Napa, CA
118805

91 | Hentley Farm

$28

2015 Barossa Valley Shiraz ^ A blend of fruit
from seven blocks at this estate in Seppeltsfield, this wine completes its fermentation
in mostly older French oak barrels, where it
rests for ten months. Even though it sees only
15 percent new oak, it carries a deep espresso
scent, needing air to move beyond the oak
toward flavors of black olives, black currants and tar. Some red fruit begins to break
through the blackness, presenting a clean,
mineral-rich wine with some Barossa grandeur. (W&S 2/17) § Hentley Farm, Radnor, PA
119398

91 | Penfolds

$150

2014 Barossa Valley RWT Bin 798 Shiraz ^
Peter Gago helped develop this Red Wine
Trial (RWT) while working with then chief
winemaker John Duval in the 1990s. The

wine presents an alternative shiraz style to
Grange, using Barossa fruit aged in mostly
new French oak. As chief winemaker since
2002, Gago finds this release of RWT as much
about the vintage as the style. A season with
above-average rainfall in winter built the
reserves of moisture in the soil, the heat of
the growing season ending in warm, dry days
that allowed the fruit to retain freshness. This
is a wine with pure depths of black cherry
flavor, rich in fruit and generous in texture.
It has the sleek, finely tailored length of a
Penfolds red, set in motion for long development ahead. (W&S 2/17) § Treasury Wine
Estates, Napa, CA
119232

91 | Torbreck

$125

2013 Barossa Valley Descendant ^ This shiraz vineyard on Roennfeldt Road was planted
in 1994 with cuttings from ancient vines
used for Torbreck's RunRig. Cofermented
with viognier that has been lightly pressed
for RunRig, the blend ages in older barrels,
from RunRig. So it's a descendant in several
ways. Tasted side by side with its ancestor,
the Descendant is not a heavy wine, but it's
no less intense. It feels floral and cool in its
bright red currant flavors, juicy rather than
jammy, sleek, structured and firm. (W&S
2/17) § Wine Creek, Healdsburg, CA

118937

90 | 5OS Project

$25

90 | Davey Family

$19

2015 McLaren Vale Shiraz Viognier Single Vineyard ^ Shiraz as black as the tar at the
edge of the road, bubbling in the summer
heat, this is full-on rich, smooth and supple,
but it still holds air within its tannins, showing the freshness of the grapes. Earthy and
broad, it's a wine for a mutton chop. (W&S
2/17) § Biagio Cru & Estate Wines, New Hyde
Park, NY
121042
2015 McLaren Vale Estate Grown Shiraz
(Best Buy) ^ Wild blueberries, floral strawberries and crushed-peppercorn tannins come
together in this tight young shiraz. The oak is
a little aggressive, but it can't tame the fruit,
which feels brisk and crunchy to the end.
It will mellow with time in a decanter. For
grilled lamb. § Saranty Imports, Harrison, NY


https://www.kysela.com/producers/thorn-clarke-winery.html http://www.biagiocru.com/products/5os-shiraz-viognier.html

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Wine & Spirits - October 2017

Contents
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - Cover1
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - Cover2
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - 1
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - 2
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - 3
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - 4
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - Contents
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - 6
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - 7
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - 8
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Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - Cover3
Wine & Spirits - October 2017 - Cover4
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