Recent Reviews

GRENACHE

2018

THE REAL REVIEW
Huon Hooke
 Medium colour, bright. Medium bodied and very intense, a superb wine with great balance and soft, fine tannins that caress the palate. A pure grenache that stands happily on its own feet. 

THE REAL REVIEW
Nick Butler
Light red colour in the glass - pinot-esque. It's fragrant and elegant showing cinnamon, raspberries and red cherries, with a tease of oak-spice. Dried red rose petals and pomegranate. Lots to like about the confidence of this wine. Deceptively firm and cored - red-berried fruit uncoils from its tannin spine. Delicious and unique. 

2017

GOURMET TRAVELLER MAGAZINE’S TOP DROPS
Max Allen
The 2017 reds are the finest I can remember tasting from this top producer. The Grenache is gorgeously spicy, perfumed, vibrant and elegant; the meaty, firm 2017 Mourvèdre is brilliant, too.

THE WINE FRONT
Campbell Mattinson
McLaren Vale grenache in light, frisky form. The mid-palate is juicy and fruit-driven, but the edges are nervy with spice. There’s crackle to the pops of flavour. Redcurrant, crushed dry leaves, graphite and woodsy spice notes. It scoots along in a carefree manner and yet a good level of tension is maintained. It’s a complex offering. Drink 2019 - 2025+

***

TEMPRANILLO

2018

JAMES SUCKLING
James Suckling
This showcases violets, dried lavender, vanilla and spices. Full body, chewy tannins and plenty of soft fruit. Drink now.

2017

GOURMET TRAVELLER WINE
November/December 2018
A character-filled red wine all about blackberry, dark cherry and richness. Big, generously flavoured with abundant ripe tannins in good balance with the fruit, the aftertaste long-lasting.

 HALLIDAY WINE COMPANION
Jane Faulkner
A whorl of dark cherries and spices meet more meaty, earthy flavours across the racy palate. It's on the shy-side of medium-bodied with stealth like tannins kicking in at the end but so does the acidity and minerally thread bringing everything together neatly.

 THE REAL REVIEW
Huon Hooke
Medium to full red colour with a trace of purple. The bouquet is all about sweet blackberries, dark cherries and rich flavour. A big, generously flavoured wine, with abundant ripe tannins in good balance and a long carry. An excellent, impressive, character-filled red. Drink 2018 - 2033

***

GRACIANO

2019

THE REAL REVIEW
Nick Butler - 93 pts
Indigo-purple colour in the glass. Lovely lifted violets and mocha with oak-spice and red licorice. It's slinky and finely-structured, albeit with regional richness. Dark cherries and skin-spice. Classy and long

2018

THE WINE FRONT
Campbell Mattinson
Beauty. As much McLaren Vale as it is Graciano in that it's sizable and plush. It also shows a great deal of oak. But it's silken, berried tipped with exotic woodsy spicy notes and seductive at every turn.

2017

THE REAL REVIEW
Toni Paterson
Excellent dried cherry flavours with palate brightness. There is an impressive supple element to the fruit. The acidity is perfectly integrated, and the oak plays a secondary role. Drink 2019 – 2022.

THE WINE FRONT
Campbell Mattinson
Graciano is such a beautiful name for a grape variety. And so fittingly, this is a beautiful wine to drink. It’s fresh, light and frisky but it’s polished and complex, or at least complex-enough. Cherry-berry flavours, five spice, peppercorns and a certain ferrous quality. It’s dry and savoury but fruit-driven at heart. It’s quite beautifully done.

JAMES SUCKLING.COM
James Suckling
While meaty and rich, this is also vibrant and colourful with blueberries, aniseed and spices. Full bodied, framing juicy fruit, bolstered by driven acidity. Drink 2018 - 2033

***

MOURVÈDRE

2018

THE REAL REVIEW
Nick Butler
Lifted violets and blueberries lead the nose - aniseed and cloves, charcuterie and spicy oak. Very attractive. It's medium-weight when sipped, mulberry fruit wrapped in savoury tannins and ironstone. Serious.

2017

THE REAL REVIEW
Toni Paterson
I adore the blueberry and mulberry fragrance of this wine. The palate is cool, rich, yet measured with appropriate tannin and acid. I like the flecks of peppery spice and the general composure of the wine. Drink 2019 – 2024. 

THE WINE FRONT
Campbell Mattinson
Mataro/mourvèdre is something of an unsung hero. This is a dry, serious style. It’s medium in weight, dark in its berried heart, flashed with leather and boot polish flavours and ripped with saltbush and tar. It’s not a big wine but it’s sturdy and dependable; it’s a characterful red wine.

HALLIDAY WINE COMPANION
Jane Faulkner
While it has all the appealing savoury, meaty/smoky flavours of the variety, it also has a core of lightly sweet pulpy fruit and plenty of spice. Medium-bodied, soft, pliable tannins and an appealing ironstone-minerally edge putting this in the pleasurable drinking zone.

***

SHIRAZ

2018

THE REAL REVIEW
Huon Hooke
Earthy, reserved aroma, smoky, sooty traces and a hint of bitter-cherry. The wine is medium to full-bodied and supple; a soft, savoury, rich-but-dry style that is nicely balanced. Very good fleshy density. Nice long after-palate.

THE REAL REVIEW
Nick Butler
Bright and vibrantly expressive - youthful and fresh. Violets and dried red flowers, lifted blue fruits. Oak is imperceptible - juicy, plush fruit allowed to sing. A brilliant wine, crafted to celebrate the region.

2017

JAMES SUCKLING
James Suckling
A peppery and heady shiraz in check with brambleberry compote, dark cherries and some tea leaves. Full bodied and juicy with succulent tannins. Drink now.

THE WINE FRONT
Campbell Mattinson
15% carbonic maceration, 18 months in French oak (20%) new. Spot on. Svelte, stylish and sustained. A power of plum-drenched flavour, tips of bitumen, redcurrant and dried herbs, slips of dark chocolate. It feels measured and immaculate even as it lays it all on. Drink 2020 - 2030+

HALLIDAY WINE COMPANION
Jane Faulkner
No mistaking from where this hails, the McLaren Vale stamp is strong and satisfying with its dark plum, choc-mint, smoky-earthy tones and roasted coffee beans. Full-bodied with ripe yet velvety tannins with a touch of bitter choc on the finish. It has some heft but it’s not over the top.

***

MOSAIC OF DREAMS

2017

THE REAL REVIEW - 95pts
Huon Hooke
Medium to deep red colour with a purple tint. The bouquet is sweetly spicy, with an overtone of pencil-shavings and a lot of savouriness in the bouquet and palate flavour. A note of chocolate emerged with airing. The finish is drying, with abundant earthy tannins and a touch of chew. Some alcohol warmth and dry spices. Plenty of detail, mellow, almost ethereal, and very savoury. Very approachable now. (65% grenache, 25% mourvedre, 10% syrah. 25% whole-bunch). 

THE REAL REVIEW - 95pts
Nick Butler
Translucent crimson-red colour, medium-weight in the glass. An alluring, under-stated bouquet - a tease of wild strawberries, pencil shavings, red licorice and oak-spice. In contrast, the palate is vivacious and beautifully-fruited showing red cherries and red plums; an ethereal, mineral-driven glide. Length is persistent courtesy of bright and crunchy acidity. Its fragrance through the palate. Sensational wine.

2016

HALLIDAY WINE COMPANION – 95pts
Jane Faulkner
A 70/15/15% split and, as with Kaleidoscope Horizons, this spends 2 years in seasoned French oak, in both wines eschewing new oak has allowed the fruit tannins to take hold. In the mix, fleshy sweet plums and red liquorice, a herbal edge that's appealing with some roasted meats and savouriness too. Sandy tannins and a freshness through and through.

THE REAL REVIEW – 95pts
Huon Hooke
Deepish red colour with the last glimmer of purple in the rim. The bouquet is subdued, fresh-earthy and slightly vegetal, discreet and clean, while the palate opens with a lot of sweet jubey fruit and backs up with savoury earthy complexities and abundant tannin. The aftertaste is long and resonant and savoury and packs a serious chew, plus a bit of alcohol warmth at the end. Very good. Drink 2019 - 2031

QWINE - 95pts
Steve Leszczynski
So delicious! A dreamboat and then some. A Grenache, Syrah and Mourvèdre blend (70/15/15) which spent 24 months in seasoned French oak. Highly perfumed and dainty on its feet, it's a wine which just purrs. Swirl the glass to reveal juicy red fruits, raspberry rope, kicks of earth, dashes of meatiness and a lick of mandarin peel. So silky and delicately smooth, powdery tannins seal the deal with a kiss. It's a belter. Run to this.

***

KALEIDOSCOPE HORIZONS

2017

THE REAL REVIEW - 95pts
Huon Hooke
Deepish red colour with a good purple tint, and aromas of assorted spices including pepper and clove. A whiff of chocolate. A rich, dense wine with full body and fleshy, high-extract texture, the tannins ample and soft and the follow-through lasting a long time. A very smart wine, bigger and bolder than the Mosaic GMS blend. (50% grenache, 35% graciano, 15% tempranillo).

THE REAL REVIEW - 96pts
Nick Butler
Pale crimson-red colour with clear edges. Charcuterie and dried red flowers, stewed plums and tapenade - a complex nose with loads of savoury charm. Complexity builds with the first sip - cured meats and sour cherries, dried cranberries with chalky tannins. Each component performing its role with effortless skill. It draws you back and back again.

2016

HALLIDAY WINE COMPANION – 95pts
Jane Faulkner
A 45/35/20% split; this spends 2 years in seasoned French oak, and it's meshed beautifully. Full-bodied, richly flavoured with spiced dark fruit, cocoa, wood smoke, ferrous and earthy too. Structured, powerful tannins yet this never feels heavy - it's lively and detailed.

 THE REAL REVIEW
Huon Hooke
Deep, rich red colour with a faint trace of purple and a complex and fascinating bouquet of smoky toasty oak and earthy, ironstone aromas. It's full-bodied, rich and solidly structured, with plenty of stuffing. An excellent wine loaded with character and interest. Drink 2019 - 2031.

THE WINE FRONT – 93pts
Mike Bennie
Charismatic blend from one of McLaren Vale’s favourite wine producers in one of McLaren Vale’s best cellar door settings. A serious wine emerges from what could be a fun-loving blend of grapes. Sour cherry scents coupled to dried strawberry, mocha notes and raspberry liquorice scents. Lots of power in perfume. The palate is sinewy in tannins and yet relatively concentrated, oily almost in its depth of dark berry and plummy fruit flavours, touched by dried herb, brown spice, let’s say bouquet garni, some Dutch liquorice (salty) and a dusting of pepper. Some grunt and grip here but never loses drinkability, still, you are in the grasp of a dense, punchy wine, no doubt. Done well with lots of detail.