Wine reviews for winter with Tyson Stelzer

96 POINTS // $75

TORBRECK

THE GASK

EDEN VALLEY

SHIRAZ 2017

A slick and sophisticated Gask that unites tremendous depth of black fruits with magnificent Eden Valley white pepper and spice, at once compact and yet with immense concentration. Tannins are super fine and very well structured, drawing out a very long finish. Huge potential. It embodies Ian Hongell’s philosophy of power with tension, and achieves this effortlessly, consummately, euphorically.

96 POINTS // $300

TORBRECK

runrig

2016

A meaty and spicy RunRig that overflows with all of the inimitable exotic spice complexity of very old Barossa Shiraz. It’s plush, silky and supple, with glorious layers of spice and the silky fine tannins of very old vines, holding with outstanding line and length and no hint of alcohol heat. The paradox of full bodied Barossa Shiraz Viognier, with fine-boned structure, seamlessness and poise.

95 POINTS // $55

TORBRECK

the struie

2017

A wine of compact precision and deep black fruit density, impressively bright, deep purple in hue, with its proportions held confidently and consummately in place, thanks to a  backdrop of firm, fine, consummately managed tannins. It lingers with great length and line. The cool 2017 season came at just the right moment for Ian Hongell’s aspiration of tension at Torbreck. Brilliant.

94 POINTS // $120

z wine

plowman

dry grown

barossa valley

shiraz 2016

As powerful and dense as its heavy bottle and black label, this is an inky Barossa Shiraz that swirls with glossy black fruits of all kinds, cherry liqueur, liquorice, sarasaparilla and dark chocolate. These 17 year old Tanunda vines have produced finely structured tannins that draw beautifully supple black fruits long into the finish.

93 POINTS // $38

CHATEAU TANUNDA

THE CHATEAU

EDEN VALLEY

SINGLE SITE

CABERNET SAUVIGNON

2016

My favourite Chateau Tanunda wine of the moment (at any price), this high vineyard has captured the tension and structure of Cabernet with determination and generosity. It’s richly layered in precise blackcurrant and cassis fruit, shored up by a firm, fine tannin scaffold that promises great potential.

93 POINTS // $28

YALUMBA

SAMUEL'S COLLECTION

EDEN VALLEY

VIOGNIER

2016

Yalumba’s legendary Eden Valley Viognier rebadged, this blend of six vineyards is an alluringly eloquent take on this variety. It’s crunchy, textured and focused, uniting almost ripe apricot with apricot kernel and bran, concluding with outstanding persistence and elegantly lively lemon juice acidity. Yalumba’s wizardry with this varietal shines in superb, fine texture. As classy as ever, and a bargain.

91 POINTS // $28

YALUMBA

SAMUEL'S COLLECTION

BAROSSA

SHIRAZ CABERNET

SAUVIGNON 2017

The Scribbler is back, redefined as Samuel’s Collection, now with a Shiraz focus (The Scribbler always had a slight Cabernet lead),
still confidently bearing the flag for Yalumba’s entry point in the great Australian red blend. The fine-boned structure and vibrant red berry crunch of Cabernet is seamlessly dovetailed with the spicy black fruits of Shiraz, promising great potential in the cellar.

91 POINTS // $35

WHISTLER

BAROSSA VALLEY

GET IN
MY BELLY

GRENACHE 2018

A pretty purity and fragrant precision belies a complex recipe of partial whole bunch, wild fermented, foot stomped and six months in old French oak puncheons. The result unites finely textured tannins with juicy, spicy raspberry and strawberry fruit and varietal rose petal fragrance.

97 POINTS // $225

Henschke
Mount Edelstone
Shiraz 2015

A delightfully characterful and exuberant Mount Edelstone that ripples and reverberates with a seamless and harmonious panoply of enticing aromatics. The fresh sage, black pepper and bay notes of the site are here in full measure, irresistible in its youth and yet infused with grand potential. Tannins are super fine, velvety and yet with a quiet, calm confidence that carries the finish until kingdom come. One of the greatest.

96 POINTS // $390

Henschke Hill of Roses
Shiraz 2013

A delightfully characterful and exuberant Mount Edelstone that ripples and reverberates with a seamless and harmonious panoply of enticing aromatics. The fresh sage, black pepper and bay notes of the site are here in full measure, irresistible in its youth and yet infused with grand potential. Tannins are super fine, velvety and yet with a quiet, calm confidence that carries the finish until kingdom come. One of the greatest.

96 POINTS // $845

Henschke
Hill of Grace
Shiraz 2014

A deeply spice-laden Hill of Grace that contrasts cool season tension with the concentration of low yields. It presents the five spice signature of this mythical site and adds winter green notes, tea leaf, bay leaf, liquorice and even coffee bean characters true to the cool 2014 season. It articulates the tension of its challenging vintage with a tangy acid line and al dente tannin structure that call
for a long time to find grace.

95 POINTS // $130

Henschke
The Wheelwright Vineyard
Eden Valley
Shiraz 2016

Exotic, fragrant and spice-laden, this is a classic Eden Valley shiraz that expresses all the exuberant mulberry, blackberry, exotic spice and black pepper that characterises the region. Fifty year old vines give tannins of supple texture, yet firm, fine confidence, seamlessly integrated with high cocoa dark chocolate oak on a finish of grand line and length.

94 POINTS // $60

Henschke
Keyneton
Euphonium 2015

A magnificent union between the spicy dark berries of Shiraz and the capsicum, leaf and fine-boned structured of Cabernet Sauvignon, lifted by the violet aromas of a dash of Cabernet Franc. Wonderful purity of crunchy, dark berry fruit depth is framed in impeccable, firm, fine tannins that promise a grand future. It exemplifies Stephen Henschke’s notion of what he dubs the “Super Barossan” blend.

94 POINTS // $38.50

Torbreck
Harris
Grenache 2017

A beautifully spicy and characterful Barossa Grenache that consummately expresses varietal integrity of rhubarb and plum with depth and concentration of blackberries, yet never heavy or broad, held confidently in line thanks to fine, crunchy tannins and effortless persistence. A vintage of clarity and subregional identity in Grenache, uniting here with harmony and beauty, finishing with classy tension and bite. The best Torbreck Grenache I have tasted.

93 POINTS // $28

Torbreck
Cuvée
Juveniles 2017

Grenache takes a magnificent lead, flattered spectacularly by the cool, wet 2017 season into a style of crunchy rhubarb, layers of spice and enticing berry compote. Impeccable crunch of fine tannins completes a long finish, in no way wanting of oak or anything else. It’s fresh, crunchy, detailed and alluringly friendly.

93 POINTS // $37.50

Torbreck
The Steading
Blanc 2018

A beautifully textured blend that celebrates the trinity of Roussanne, Marsanne and Viognier, brimming with spice and fleshy apricots and peaches, concluding with impeccably managed structure the impeccably integrates the crunch of very well managed phenolic texture with gentle oak structure and fine acidity, providing a lovely effortless seamlessness on the finish.

92 POINTS // $37

Henschke
Henry's Seven
2017

Brimming with spicy berry compote, this is a beautifully friendly, flamboyant blend that bounces with impressive purity and depth of crunchy, tiny dark berries and lifted fragrance of violets and a hint of Viognier apricot. Firm, fine tannins draw out a long finish, eloquently supported by dark chocolate oak. A great expression of young vine Shiraz, cunningly tweaked with Grenache, Mataro and Viognier.

91 POINTS // $28

Kalleske
Moppa
Barossa Valley
Shiraz 2017

One of the most characterful and distinctive wines in the current Kalleske stable, the 2017 season has given birth to a Shiraz more peppery and spicy than ever, even accented with rhubarb, though still upholding the supple milk chocolate slipperiness that characterises Moppa. A touch of Petit Verdot and Viognier build complexity in this finely structured style.

90 POINTS // $28

Yalumba
Samuel's Collection
Barossa
Bush Vine Grenache 2018

From vines of at least 35 years of age, this is a wine that exemplifies the friendly and approachable aspiration of Yalumba’s new Samuel’s Collection range. A fragrant, elegant and fruity style, it’s built around a core of rhubarb and poached strawberries, impeccably structured with finely textured tannins and tangy acidity.

90 POINTS // $28

Yalumba
Samuel's Collection
Barossa
Grenache Shiraz Mataro 2017

The fragrant and red-fruited elegance of Grenache takes the lead in this refreshing blend, subtly supported by Shiraz and Mataro. Their seamless union celebrates bright fruit, tangy structure and lively poise, making for wonderfully dextrous food-matching versatility.