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2018 Vat 9 Shiraz


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The grapes for our Vat 9 Shiraz are sourced from the oldest and best blocks on our Ashmans property, with the oldest vines dating back to 1892. All of these blocks sit on a strip of red soil that runs through the winery, soil that’s ideal for growing super-premium Shiraz. The 2018 vintage, one of the earliest Shiraz harvests we’ve seen, was simply spectacular for Shiraz in the Hunter Valley. Warm, dry conditions kept cropping levels down, producing wines of great concentration and length of flavour. Handpicked and sorted in the vineyard, the grapes from the different blocks were all kept separate during fermentation. Some whole bunches were included in the ferment and most of the fruit was destemmed but not crushed, ensuring as many whole berries as possible were in the fermenter. Following fermentation, the individual wines were matured in new and one-year-old French-oak casks until the Vat 9 blend was carefully assembled. The wine was then returned to the same casks for further maturation. No finings were used. Intense purple in colour, the wine displays a pretty, red-berry nose with hints of subtle oak and lifted spice. The medium-bodied palate shows soft, sweet fruits and more of that subtle oak, all complemented by a fine, clean acid structure and long tannins. This is a classic Vat 9 that is destined to have a long life in the cellar.

Alcohol – 13.5%
Cellaring – 10+ years


96 Points | James Suckling, jamessuckling.com

"Lots of crushed berries with red earth, terra-cotta and hints of metal and blue fruit. Ferrous. Salt and white pepper. Some oyster shell, too. Full to medium body, bright fruit and lightly chewy yet polished tannins."

96 Points | Huon Hooke, The Real Review

"Deep, bold, bright purple/red colour. The bouquet is reserved and almost floral, with dried herb and essency dark berry aromas. A touch of reduction. The palate is medium to full-bodied and the dark-fruit flavours are intense and long-lasting. There are generous tannins, which are fine and supple and run the full length of the palate. Superb balance and poise, a very promising youngster with a long career ahead of it. A superb shiraz, very much in Tyrrell style, which is restrained compared to some other top Hunters - even in a great year like 2018."

96+ Points | Gary Walsh, The Winefront

“Red and black fruits, sweet liquorice and milk chocolate on the sly, spice and plenty of perfume. Medium-bodied, fresh blackberry, lively, powerful, succulent and smooth, creaminess to the tannin, a chocolate and velour deluxe kind of feel, bright boysenberry acidity, and heaps of length. A very fine Vat 9. One for the ages.”

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