I tasted four Shiraz wines from the northern areas of the Barossa, where red brown earth reigns supreme. There is no doubt that ripeness and alcohol levels have been paired back a little in recent years, but this has not changed the characteristic flavour and structure profile of these wines.
The 2010 Kaesler Old Vine Shiraz is an attractive wine. Blackberry fruit dominates, the wine is very smooth and it finishes with fine tannins.
The 2010 First Drop Fat of the Land Ebenezer wine is a little bolder. Fruit flavours are similar, but there is more complexity on the palate. The tannins are more muscular and there is quite a lot of oak on the palate. This wine needs time.
The 2009 Peter Lehmann 1885 Vineyard Shiraz is only made in special years. This wine sits between the last two in terms of body weight. It has slightly minty flavours. The tannins are finely grained, but the wine lacks some mouthfeel expected of such a wine. The finish is long.
The 2010 Hentley Farm The Beast is full bodied, showing rich black and red fruit. This wine has the best colour of these four, intense yet vibrant. The wine has a strong structure pointing to a long life. The tannins are ripe and show some softness.