Important Announcement. Australia Unearthed II is Postponed.
In the UK, the number of coronavirus cases are rising by the day. Currently, the UK government have delayed closing schools and introducing other stringent measures however, and with a heavy heart, I have taken the decision to postpone our three-day wine festival.
The health and wellbeing of our travelling winemakers, our national and international guests and of course, my team is my highest priority. As such, I feel compelled to postpone Australia Unearthed II until later this year. Currently, we are looking at the month of October – dates are to be confirmed.
Your ticket(s) will automatically move to the October tasting however, I have no objection should you wish to receive a full refund. Please contact my team who will happily assist.
My very best wishes,
What links Château de Beaucastel and Sine Qua Non to Stolpman?
The connection between Château de Beaucastel, the cult producer Sine Qua Non and Stolpman Vineyards is fascinating. During the early 1990s Stolpman Vineyards was born through planting a superb vinicultural site in Ballard Canyon, California with cuttings of the famed Rhône legend, Château de Beaucastel. The quality of the fruit produced at Stolpman Vineyards is highly desired amongst the Californian winemaking guild with smaller amounts available each year as, and justifiably, Stolpman is producing wines under their very own label which has the world wine market excited.
Why? The list of regular buyers includes the award-winning Sine Qua Non, who developed a cult following for their eclectic range, where Syrah plays the leading role. Historically, Stolpman’s fruit made many of Sine Qua Non’s 100 Point wines which regularly sell for daft money. For example, the 2013 Stolpman Originals Syrah is positively cheap compared to the £230 which many Syrahs from SQN fetch…
Although the same fruit in different winemakers’ hands often creates contrasting wines, you would be forgiven if you were unable to name the same vineyard. An interesting experiment which we learnt with our Aussie producers while sampling Standish Lamella Shiraz next to Hutton Vale Farm Shiraz. Dan Standish uses 100% Hutton Vale’s Shiraz for his Lamella however, both wines are unique and distinctive – you can read our full article here.
Stolpman Vineyards Originals Syrah 2013
"What's becoming the flagship Syrah for the estate, the 2013 Syrah Originals Estate comes from the original planting of the estate from 1992. It offers more texture, depth, richness and elegance over the Estate Syrah and possesses beautiful notes of creme de cassis, barbecue smoke, crushed pepper and violets. Medium to full-bodied, ripe and textured, yet always pure and balanced, it will have a decade of longevity."
£39.50 per bottle
Stolpman’s ties to the famed Rhône producer, Famille Perrin (the owners of Château de Beaucastel) runs deep. The Perrin family placed an offer on a prime viticultural site in Ballard Canyon all the way back in 1987 and so did Tom Stolpman. After both parties didn’t receive any response from the cattle ranch owner, the Perrin family moved north to Westside Paso Robles and purchased the Tablas Creek property in 1989 instead. Tom succeeded in purchasing the land later and established Stolpman Vineyards. The common bond which both the Perrins and Tom Stolpman were looking for was LIMESTONE.
As proud owners of Château de Beaucastel in Châteauneuf-du-Pape, the Perrin family made an obvious decision and they sourced their superb Rhône plant material from the old continent and started a nursery to propagate the French clones in California. Tom Stolpman purchased the exceptional vine cuttings of Beaucastel’s Roussanne and Syrah and as a result, Stolpman Vineyards are (rightly so) proud to own the fabulous plant material in their vineyards.
Fast becoming the flagship Syrah for the estate, the 2013 Originals Syrah comes from the initial planting of the estate from 1992. In fact, the Originals block is not only Stolpman’s first planting, but it is the very first Syrah block of Ballard Canyon. The low yields of these dry-farmed vines give a rich concentration to the Originals Syrah.
The Original Vineyard Syrah possesses superb dynamics. Nuanced blueberry-blackberry fruits are decorated by peppery spice which dances across solid structure. The dark core dives into lushness, but is brought back with a chalky, savoury finish. These old vines tell the story of a life spent rooting deep into solid limestone through interwoven minerality. This wine should be consumed over a long evening, allowing time to discover new complexities with every sip.
We have sold out of the l’Avion Roussanne (in the style of Vieilles Vignes) however, we sampled Stolpman’s Estate Roussanne 2017 this week which has come-on leaps and bounds since bottling.
"The palate is unctuous...
The length is astonishing."
Stolpman Vineyards Estate Roussanne 2017
97 Points - Stuart McCloskey
“Pleasingly, the wine has put-on some textural weight during the past 12-months. I would add a note of caution as to the choice of glassware. I sampled the wine using Zalto Bordeaux and Universal. The bigger Bordeaux glass is better suited in my opinion as it shows off the luscious richness and textural mouthfeel (not at all heavy) against the Universal glass, which provides less expressive notes and stimulation. The nose offers ripe apricot, confit lemon with a lovely floral array. The palate builds with an impressive level of balance and breadth. The palate is unctuous with layers of honeyed, spiced orchard fruits and honeysuckle, but remains bright and focused. The length is astonishing. Wonderful value and will be drinking perfectly for another 5-8 years.”
£25.95 per bottle
Also creating a stir in the industry…
In Washington State, Gramercy Cellars produce exceptional wines which rival many Old World heroes. They keep consistently outscoring a number of famous US wineries, placing Gramercy Cellars firmly amongst the stellar wineries in Washington State.
Furthermore, their wines represent exceptional value especially when compared to other popular wines from the region and to highlight this, here is a shortlist of the highest scoring wines from Washington State reviewed by Jeb Dunnuck along with current prices:
Cayuse Bionic Frog Syrah 2016 £333.33 per bottle (In Bond)
Quilceda Creek Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 – £181.95 per bottle
Hors Categorie Syrah 2016 – circa £300.00 per bottle (In Bond)
Quilceda Creek Galitzine Vineyard – from £160.00 per bottle (In Bond)
Gramercy Cellars John Lewis Syrah 2015 - £74.95 per bottle
Gramercy Cellars Lagniappe Syrah 2015 - £51.95 per bottle
Quilceda Creek Palengat 2015 – circa £130.00 per bottle (In Bond)
Gramercy Cellars John Lewis Syrah 2015
98+ Points - Jeb Dunnuck
"Another tour de force, the 2015 Syrah John Lewis offers more lavender, violets, and minerality, as well as incredible black and blue fruits. This peppery, meaty, rich, full-bodied effort has building tannin, awesome purity, and integrated acidity, and it's certainly one of the finest Syrahs in the vintage. It's more tannic than the Lagniappe Cuvée and is going to benefit from short-term cellaring, with two decades of overall longevity. Bravo! This vintage comes from a single block in the Les Collines Vineyard, in Walla Walla, isn’t destemmed, and spends 19 months in 7% new French oak puncheons."
£69.50 per bottle
Gramercy Cellars Lagniappe Syrah 2015
98 Points - Jeb Dunnuck
"Always one of my favorite releases from this estate, the 2015 Syrah Lagniappe is 100% Syrah (mostly from the Red Willow Vineyard in Yakima, with 5% from the Forgotten Hills Vineyard just south of Walla Walla). Deep ruby/plum-colored and loaded with Côte Rôtie-like (Côte Blonde?) notes of black raspberries, crushed flowers, tapenade, and crushed flowers, this beauty is medium to full-bodied, seamless, and silky on the palate, with incredible finesse and elegance. It's going to benefit from 3-4 years of bottle age and knock your socks off over the following decade or more. It’s unquestionably one of the wines of the vintage."
£51.95 per bottle
"I have no alternative but concede perfection and add it to my legends list..."
Gramercy Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve 2013
100 Points - Stuart McCloskey
"Wow what a bouquet – This is such a fantastic Cabernet Sauvignon which reminds me of a top Pauillac - Château Pontet Canet / Latour come to mind. The aromas soar from the glass - Exotic, seductive with vibrant scents of cassis, black currents, graphite and cedar. I detect a little menthol in the background. The palate is rich and coats every facet. The filigree framework of tannins are seamless and support the wine beautifully. There’s a beguiling sense of purity which is something rarely seen. The finesse, poise and focus is quite extraordinary. Overall, the wine is effortless with layer upon layer of perfectly ripe fruit. The complexity builds with time in the decanter and I cannot wait to come back to this wine over the next decade or two. I cannot see how this utterly majestic wine could possibly improve therefore, I have no alternative but concede perfection and add it to my legends list... "
£94.50 per bottle
* Only 5 bottles available*
Gramercy Cellars The Third Man Grenache 2013
94 Points - Jeb Dunnuck
"Tasted out of bottle, the 2013 The Third Man, which incorporates 19% Syrah and 5% Mourvèdre, sports a semi-translucent ruby color as well as perfumed notes of black cherry liqueur, raspberries, potpourri and dried flowers. Supple, elegant and seamless, with no hard edges, sweet, sweet tannin and medium to full-bodied richness, this fabulous Grenache would be a dead ringer for a top Chateauneuf du Pape in a blind tasting. It’s the best vintage of this cuvee to date and will have 10-15 years of overall longevity."
£36.50 per bottle
* Only 7 bottles available *
The 2017 Two Hands Garden Series SALE
Wines from six unique Australian regions that best illustrate the complexity of Shiraz grown in contrasting terroirs.
Now £26.95 per bottle
For comparison Majestic are selling
Bella's Garden for £40.00 per bottle...
Mixed five pack - Now £134.75
includes FREE UK delivery
Large Format Sale Continues…
Our large format clear-out has worked a treat – thank you for all your orders. Next week, we hand over the remaining stocks to our trade customers who will enjoy further discounts, simply based on the FX market.
The biggest bargains - get them before the trade buys them on Tuesday!
Two Hands Lily's Garden Shiraz
2006 Double Magnum (3L)
Jay Miller (erobertparker.com) "The 2006 Shiraz Lily’s Garden comes from McLaren Vale. It reveals a complex aromatic array including balsam wood, spice box, violets, earth notes, pepper, blueberry, and blackberry. Layered and rich, it conceals enough ripe tannin to evolve for another 2-3 years. It has outstanding grip, depth, and a lengthy, pure finish. Drink it from 2011 to 2022."
Our nearest competitor - £114.00
Was £63.50 per double magnum IB
Now £57.50 per double magnum IB
Wild Duck Creek Springflat Shiraz 2006 Magnum (1.5L)
Our standard bottle price is £34.95
Was £38.65 per magnum IB
Now £30.50 per magnum IB
Two Hands Deer in Headlights Shiraz 2002 Double Magnum (3L)
Our nearest competitor - £109.61
Was 85.00 per double magnum IB
Now 72.95 per double magnum IB
Torbreck The Factor 2004 Imperial (6L)
Presented in Original Wooden Case
Hand numbered and signed by David Powell
Our nearest competitor - £545.00
Was £310.00 per imperial IB
Now £280.50 per imperial IB
Torbreck The Pict 2004 Imperial (6L)
Presented in Original Wooden Case
Hand numbered and signed by David Powell
Our nearest competitor - £335.00
Was £282.50 per imperial IB
Now £247.00 per imperial IB