Stuart McCloskey "I thought it prudent to add my tasting note (sampled 8 October) as firstly, I was keen to see how this wine has aged and secondly, I would hate for customers to get carried away with the Grange connection. So, let’s answer question two – no, this does not resemble Penfolds Grange and nor should it. However, there is an aspiring twinge of excitement nonetheless. After 10 minutes in the glass – leathery notes mix beautifully with a little wood dust and truffle. Game and a little blood too, which adds to the bouquet’s complexity. I am sure I detect some coconut or fresh vanilla pod? Both, perhaps? I am starting to really enjoy the aromatics… The palate is caressed with super-fine tannins which gently wrap themselves around the mature sweet-tinged fruit. Stewed plums, a little menthol, tobacco and chocolate (minty chocolate). Lots of interest and a thoroughly delicious, mature wine. I would not recommend cellaring this one any longer – drink-up and over the next 12 months. Sampled using Zalto Bordeaux glassware. Not decanted and not necessary…"
Zalto Denk-Art Bordeaux Glass
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.
Viking Wines are sleek and smooth, full-bodied with concentrated black fruit, silky soft tannins, with well-rounded lengthy finishes. The wines have good age-worthiness due to the power of its fruit and high alcohol.
The success of these Iconic wines is the result of its owners, (Tord & Charmaine Soderstrom) dedication to producing a top quality brand. Prior to them purchasing the property in September 1993, the Shiraz was purchased by Penfolds for incorporating into its world famous "Grange"
Tord and Charmaine realised "we had a prime Shiraz-grown estate at our hands and wanted to bring the best out of its rare old vines by producing our own individual bottle of magic"
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.
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