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Explore Culled Barrel Vintages&hellip...

This ‘near perfect’ reject is the result of Tatiarra’s ruthless pursuit of perfection with winemaker Ben Riggs culling any barrels that are not up to the lofty standards of the Estate’s top labels.

Region:  Heathcote, Victoria

Winemakers:  Ben Riggs & Peter Flewellyn


Background: Tatiarra produces three styles of Shiraz and any wine that is not suitable for inclusion into the main blends is labelled as ‘Culled Barrel Shiraz’. An accountant would argue that growing a single grape variety is not exactly a prudent business practice, for if the demand for the variety wanes, Tatiarra has no other wine to offer. This may well be the argued case in larger, more diverse wine producing companies, however Tatiarra is a specialist niche producer. The company’s obsession is not to be the biggest, but rather one of the best Shiraz producers in the world. In order to achieve the extraordinary quality of Tatiarra’s flagship wines (Cambrian and Caravan of Dreams), each barrel from each vintage is tasted and classified. Any barrels, that for whatever reason, fail to improve the flag ship wines are culled. Winemaker Ben Riggs is ruthless in his selection, and it is often with considerable dismay (and subsequent financial loss) that the winemakers declare a barrel not worthy of the main blend.

Vintage Conditions: 2014 proved to be a challenging vintage in general for the Heathcote district, a heavy frost hit the region just as flower set had begun and a large number of vineyards lost up to 80% of their crop. Tatiarra, situated at the base of Camel Mountain came through unscathed as the frost slide through without damaging the vines. Yet another dry vintage and temperatures in the mid 40’s meant water had to be trucked in as all dam supplies had been exhausted. Water is applied to keep the vines in perfect condition thus avoiding loss of foliage. Vintage started on the 5th March and finished on the 26th March allowing each section of the vineyards to be picked at their optimal point of ripeness. Tatiarra came through these trying conditions with a near perfect vintage, winemaker Ben Riggs ranking it just below the great 2013 vintage.

Colour: Impenetrable inky  black colour with deep dark red black hue.

Nose:  Strong dark fruit aromas of blackberry, liquorice and dark plums are followed by some chocolatey vanillin oak and a hint of spicy pepper.

Palate: Another powerful wine in line with the 2013, it’s hard to believe that this is actually a declassified wine. Rich generous flavours of liquorice,and blackberry are mixed in with vanillin oak and dark chocolate nuances overlaying some pepper on the finish. Solid structure holds firm beneath the layers of opulent fruit. Excellent concentration with a long conclusion. Cellar 5+ years.

Alc/Vol: 15% 
Bottled with Stelvin Seal.
Packed in 6 x 750ml Cartons

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