Our philosophy is to obtain the best possible fruit to make the best possible wine and to do better each year.
In 2002 Mark Herbertt made a trial Shiraz with 90% McLaren Vale and 10% Barossa Valley fruit. This worked out so well, and sold out so quickly, that we established a formal partnership.
In 2003 we failed to find any fruit which we liked so did not make a wine. However, in 2004, we were lucky enough to secure some excellent 1654 Shiraz from a young grower in Marananga. His family have been growing grapes in the Barossa for generations. Our 2004 vintage was made by one of the “rising star” Barossa winemakers (unfortunately we are not allowed to use his name on the web or in retail sales). The 2004 Shiraz was a great success and after being given 94 points in James Halliday’s Wine Guide promptly sold out.
The fruit for the 2005 Shiraz was from the same consistently excellent grower and 3 others we had not used before. All fruit we sourced was of the highest quality and each parcel was subtly different from the other 3. All parcels were vinified separately and then each spent time in a combination of Seguin-Moreau medium toast, fine grained French oak hogsheads and 2 year old American Oak until mid-2006. The wine was released in late 2007. It is a complex luscious wine that we are very pleased with.
In 2005 and 2006 we experimented with a limited amount of very interesting old vine Barossa Grenache that we blended to produce a GSM. Both the 2005 and 2006 GSM were in very limited quantities with the 2005 selling out in a matter of weeks.
In 2006 we also experimented with small amounts of low production old vine Cabernet Sauvignon we sourced from both the Barossa Valley and from McLaren Flat. We love this iconic Australian variety and are ecstatic at what Pete Schell has achieved. It is so good we have made it our “reserve” wine and called it “The Scorpiiion”.
As our plans are totally dependent on producing only the highest quality wines so we did not make wine in 2007, 2009 or 2012.
This has paid off with our Shiraz’s in particular with great James Halliday reviews and points for all wines so far:
2004 Shiraz - 94
2005 Shiraz - 93
2006 Shiraz - 94
2008 Shiraz - 94
2008 Single Vineyard Shiraz - 95
2010 Shiraz - 94
We have had a hiatus in 2011 - only producing a 90 point Rose. In 2012 we took a break so we produced no wine at all. In 2013 we are intending to produce Barossa Valley Shiraz again.