Utopos Shiraz 2017

Barossa Valley
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£34.95 per bottle
39 in stock

98++ Points - Stuart McCloskey “A remarkable wine with ribbons of silky tannins weaving magic amongst the lakes of ripe, blue and black fruit. In every sense, it is perfectly formed. The bouquet provides the same ‘goosebump’ moment, as if I were sampling for the first time. There’s little change from violets, liquorice stick, blackberry pastille, cola, Indian ink and cold iron – warm earth emerges with more aeration. The floral character has heightened and there’s a marine character – white pepper on the finish too. Texturally, there’s a sense of wonder to this wine. The fruit sails effortless across the palate – rich but far from confected. There’s an earthiness from the tannins which grounds the fruit component. The balance is impeccable. I previously mentioned the wine as being a ‘skyscraper’ – I have changed this view. Yes, it is substantial but it is far from being monolithic. As anticipated, the flavours match those found on the nose with violets, blackberry pastille and flowers leading the way on what is a wondrous journey. Sweet spices, a core of juicy acidity and the grip of silky, earthy tannins are a perfect marriage. There’s an overriding sense of gracefulness which did not show last year.  The equilibrium is utterly captivating and the precision on point. A brilliant wine. Decant for 4-6 hours. Served using Zalto Bordeaux glassware. Drinking now (quite amazingly) to 2040.” Sampled 25.02.2021. 

98-99 Points - Stuart McCloskey “The integration of fruit, acid, tannin and oak is amazing especially considering the wine is so young. It needs time in a decanter (4-6 hours, perhaps longer) to unlock the bouquet which unfurls with floral notes, violets, blackberry pastille, cola, Indian ink, iron and mineral driven earthy aromas too. The combination of power and finesse is bewitching as is the densely packed fruit which weaves magic on my palate. The fruit is rich, but impeccably balanced. Expansive whilst retaining seamlessness. A skyscraper but one which offers agility. A depth which is already impressive yet has a very long way to go. The flavours match those found on the nose with violets, blackberry pastille and flowers leading. Sweet spices, a core of juicy acidity and the grip of silky tannins compliment. There is no end to this wine – it just keeps giving. I am genuinely left speechless considering the price for this bottle. This is my second bottle and my notes are equal. Served using Zalto Bordeaux glassware. Drink now (you must decant) and this will certainly get better and better over the coming 10-20 years. I should award 100 points as I have never sampled a wine this good, at this price level however, and wrongly so, I am reluctant for this one reason.” Sampled August 2020. 

99 + Points - Magda Sienkiewicz "Sampled after 4 hours of decanting. The perfume oozing from the glass immediately stops you in your tracks. Clearly you are in presence of an extraordinary wine. Predominantly Shiraz with a dash of Mataro (10%), the nose is super-expressive with a vast array of fruit, blueberry liqueur and intoxicating notes of iron, pen ink, lead pencil, graphite, warm earth and violets. The palate is extremely juicy and mirrors the rich aromas in a impressive harmony. Incredibly complex, yet you can’t escape the sense of elegance and polish to the minute detail. Such a compelling wine of soaring quality and allure. Mesmerising and breathtaking, this wine takes a firm place in my top 5 Shiraz wines of all time. I can’t resist an extra plus for extraordinary value." Sampled August 2020. 

Taste & Aroma

98++ Points - Stuart McCloskey “A remarkable wine with ribbons of silky tannins weaving magic amongst the lakes of ripe, blue and black fruit. In every sense, it is perfectly formed. The bouquet provides the same ‘goosebump’ moment, as if I were sampling for the first time. There’s little change from violets, liquorice stick, blackberry pastille, cola, Indian ink and cold iron – warm earth emerges with more aeration. The floral character has heightened and there’s a marine character – white pepper on the finish too. Texturally, there’s a sense of wonder to this wine. The fruit sails effortless across the palate – rich but far from confected. There’s an earthiness from the tannins which grounds the fruit component. The balance is impeccable. I previously mentioned the wine as being a ‘skyscraper’ – I have changed this view. Yes, it is substantial but it is far from being monolithic. As anticipated, the flavours match those found on the nose with violets, blackberry pastille and flowers leading the way on what is a wondrous journey. Sweet spices, a core of juicy acidity and the grip of silky, earthy tannins are a perfect marriage. There’s an overriding sense of gracefulness which did not show last year.  The equilibrium is utterly captivating and the precision on point. A brilliant wine. Decant for 4-6 hours. Served using Zalto Bordeaux glassware. Drinking now (quite amazingly) to 2040.” Sampled 25.02.2021. 

Glassware

Glassware

Zalto Denk-Art Bordeaux Glass

Due to further lockdowns in Austria we are experiencing extended delays with our Zalto orders.  

We are currently expecting our next delivery to arrive July/August 2021.

The Zalto Bordeaux glass is recommended for weightier style reds, probably our most widely used glass when tasting in house, this glass is great for many different wines. The large bowl helping aerate and soften tannins whilst accentuating the wine's depth and concentration. The Bordeaux glass is the ideal choice for Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, Zinfandel, Bordeaux or Rhône style blends and many other red wines. Surprisingly, it is also the glass of choice for oaked Chardonnay, the shape of the bowl accentuating the balance of ripe fruits and oak.

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Utopos Wines

Producer

Buy Utopos Wines online

 

The Utopos vineyard is located on Roennfeldt Road, straddling one of the highest points on the boundary between Greenock and Marananga, perched on the Northern end of the Ironstone Ridge that lays claim to some of the Barossa’s most famous vineyards. Right next door is the source of winemaker Kym Teusner's own Righteous Shiraz along with Torbreck’s Laird, Two Hands, Greenock Creek and the list goes on. At 315m it sits among the most elevated sites on the ‘valley floor’ and being on the end of the ridge there are three distinct aspects to the block – East planted predominantly to Shiraz, North to Cabernet Sauvignon and West to Grenache and Mataro. “It doesn’t come any sweeter than this” says Kym…

Read our Q&A with Kym Teusner - Read article

Read 'Tasting Utopia' - Read article

 

Region

Barossa Valley Wines

 

A land of rolling hills and ancient vines, in the heart of South Australia, Barossa is arguably Australia’s most recognised wine region, but has not been without its ups and downs.

 

Barossa’s story began in the mid 1800s when a group of Silesian Lutherans, fleeing religious persecution, settled in the region and began working the land of Barossa’s largest land owner George Fife Angas. The settlers took to growing fruit and due to the climate in the region, grapes were most ideally suited and toward the end of the 1800s, several wineries had been established. Distinctly Germanic names such a Johann Henschke, Oscar Seppelt of Seppeltsfield and Kaesler that are leading names in the Barossa wine industry today are evidence of these early pioneers, and many are continuing today through several generations of the same family.

The wines were originally produced for religious and home use but it didn’t take long before they were being made commercially and by the start of the 20th Century wine was being exported back to England. The demand for fortified wine was huge and this coupled with the long journey on water, fortified wines dominated Barossa’s wine market right up until the end of the 1960s, but this would lead to a crisis that would set the industry into decline. As demand for fortified wines dried up, many growers were left unprofitable and the South Australian Government introduced the vine pull scheme, uprooting many of Barossa’s ancient vines during the 1980s. It took the efforts of some of the regions new faces of the time to bring the industry back by paying the growers above market value for their grapes, and saving the old vines that have become a hallmark of Barossa wine.

It is Barossa’s ancient vines that have shaped the region's style and reputation and the forward thinking attitude of the region's producers is one that is only beginning to filter through to the rest of the wine world. The winemakers of the 1980s helped to revive Barossa’s heritage, paving the way for the next generation of Barossa winemakers and this balance between heritage and progression has continued with an unparalleled energy through the region's newest and brightest stars of the 21st Century.

The Barossa Valley is warm and dry with low rainfall and low humidity, which can lead to a risk of drought during the growing season. It’s lower in altitude and is typified by gentle, rolling hills and valleys and is home to some of the world’s oldest clusters of vines, some of which are over 125 years old. These old vines are very low yielding and produce exceptionally concentrated fruit which is exploited by producers like Greenock Creek, Hobbs and Standish to make very rich and powerful wines that due to their concentration, often reach high levels of alcohol. Although several varieties are grown across Barossa, by far the most widely planted is Shiraz, producing rich, fruit forward wines. In the past, Barossa’s reputation has suffered from this rich style of wine, with consumers and producers favouring wines from cooler areas of Australia. However, a wave of smaller, artisan wineries began to pop up during the 1980’s and 1990’s and brought a resurgence to this region.

Explore the Barossa - Read more

Customer Reviews

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Ratings Summary

8 of 8 (100%) reviewers would recommend this product to a friend.

Merrick Marshall2nd May 2021

I decanted the wine some 3 hours before we drank it. It was fitting that we should use our Zalto Bordeaux glasses. On the nose I could detect very little.The wine had an almost ethereal quality in that it was not the full bodied fruit-laden beast that I had anticipated but more gossamer-like and nuanced.The overwhelming aromas were mint,vanilla, herbs and liquorice but no fruits or berries in evidence.The tannins were ultra-smooth as if I had swallowed a silk scarf . Twenty four hours later the wine had changed personality altogether. Now it displayed on the nose the dark forest fruits, blackcurrants, blueberries and stewed plums that I had eagerly anticipated earlier.It was a revelation and at that point I had discovered what this wine was all about.Who knows what it will taste like tomorrow?

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MIKE BROWN17th Feb 2021

Delicious! Buy Now!

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Gavin Jones8th Feb 2021

I have been developed a creeping realisation that some drinking windows put me into ‘he’s had a good innings’ territory. What to do about it? Drink as well as possible, drink mindfully, uncork at will. In addition, drink wine of such mind blowing intensity it simultaneously knocks your out of your rumination and reminds you that life is usually ready to burst out so just enjoy the ride. Bit like this one. Expertly sourced and enthusiastically recommended by @thevinorium. In its yoof, but I am not, so an ultra long airing was delivered and we tucked in. Holds firm its power with a wonderful elegance. Incredible fruit, monumental structure and already a lovely length. A younger palate was wowed by its Xmas spice. Well it stoned me to my soul and ain’t not doubt. Here's to staying alive until we crack open the next one.

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Adam Hoskins12th Nov 2020

The 2017 Utopos Shiraz is a truly magnificent wine. Left to breathe four hours before drinking it opened up nicely and the result is a better developed and more approachable wine than most other quality Australians of similar youth. The familiar notes of leather, cedar, and restrained fruit are all there and present themselves over a remarkable and protracted delivery. Sit back and enjoy, that first sip is going to take a while to fully appreciate! The temptation to open another is almost overwhelming but I have high hopes that this wine will continue to improve in the bottled for at least the next fifteen years so given the paucity of our supply we have put our stock down with a label on the box telling us to try another in five years time.

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Philippa Hoskins12th Nov 2020

Tried the Utopos 2017 Shiraz and thought I had fallen gently backwards into the most luscious gustatory blackberry bush imaginable. To think that the rest of the stash is only going to get better than this has had me running for the loft ladder like it was December 1st.

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Nick Woznitza30th Oct 2020

And you were right, the ‘17 is a very different beast to the ‘18, this was evident as soon as the wine entered the decanter. The vanilla tones missing, a more typical Barossa aroma. Save the odd (small) taste over the afternoon we managed to wait 5 hours. The wine really did open up and come into its own. Like the ‘18 the tannins have been expertly intertwined especially as such a young age. Bold yet elegant, red fruit profile that continues almost forever. The disappointment of the empty bottle is tempered by the knowledge it won’t be our last. (Lucky us!!) AMs review (I dropped a glass off to the office as she was still in a call). She bounded down the stairs and pronounced “what the hell is this, it’s bloody brilliant!!”

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Tomas Requena30th Oct 2020

SPECTACULAR. That's the exact word. I could say: balanced acidity, intense flavor, long finish, blah, blah, blah.... But, spectacular. All other words are superfluous. In my opinion there is no need to decant. I'm testing it right now, wonderful.

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Barry and Susan Cleaver30th Oct 2020

Decanted for 2.5 hours. A very lovely wine. Young but we expect it to improve further. We feel that it would benefit from decanting for 4+ hours. The wine has a good bouquet, great colour and depth. We feel the tannin will mellow slightly overtime. Overall a really , really good wine.

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