3 Rings is a collaboration of the famous Hickinbotham family of the Barossa Valley. Their vineyards are well known to be some of the very best in the region and have been contributors to the wines of such greats as Chris Ringland. The vineyards for 3 Rings Shiraz lie on an east-west slope with predominantly north-south rows, at an average age of 35 years. Cedary up front, with an appealing layer of smoke and spice to the bright, supple and ripe cherry and raspberry fruit flavors. Notes of tobacco and clove gain presence on the finish. WINE SPECTATOR 89 points. Notes of wild herbs bring added interest to this wine's cherry fruit. It's...
Jeremy Oliver 92 points. “Bindi maintains a revered, cult-like status in the wine world. Many argue that their wine, made organically and in scarce supply, are the best in Victoria. The Shiraz for this wine comes from one of Heathcote's coolest, highest sites meaning that although it is from a different region to the home blocks, it still carries the cool-climate character of Bindi's whole stable. Exceptional value for the price, this Shiraz is marked by an impressively long palate. Fruit flavour is dark in profile, with pepper, spice and charcuterie asserting themselves, and while vibrant and fresh, the Shiraz is still mouth-coatingly...
Wine Front 94 points. "This wine has been made for some fifteen years now. A long term relationship with Heathcote, on the side, kind of. About 25% whole bunch and 90% of the oak barrels are used, pinot noir ones. Super inky colour. Dark fruits, anise, new leather, graphite and, curiously, something that reminded me of the scent of wasabi peas. It’s a friendly, intriguing perfume. Thick silk texture – a touch coarse underside but the gloss is all there on top. Concentrated, dense, but a freshness alongside. Moody dark fruits, anise, sweet spice, molten dark chocolate tannins with mocha powder in the mix. Fine nectar." Mike Bennie, The...
James Halliday 96 points. 15+yo vines, hand-picked and sorted, 4% viognier co-fermented in open tanks, 20-22 days on skins, matured for 18 months in French oak (25% new). A very elegant shiraz reflecting its modest alcohol, the moderating effect of viognier, and gentle winemaking extraction. Spicy red fruits are already supple, and the balance of oak and tannins can't be faulted. Shortly put, it could be drunk tomorrow. JH.
James Suckling 94 points, Wine Advocate 94 points. Deep garnet with a touch of purple, the 2009 Cluster M45 Shiraz has notes of fragrant earth and forest floor over youthful black fruits and tar. Full-bodied and built like a brick house with firm chewy tannins and a nice acid backbone, it has a wonderfully long, earthy finish.WA 94. LPB Feb 2015.
WA 95+. Medium to deep garnet, the 2012 Cluster M45 Shiraz presents lovely red and black cherry notes, black raspberries and kirsch with hints of menthol, aniseed, pepper and lavender. Medium-bodied, elegant and showing very fine tannins, it has just enough acid to lift the rich fruit and a good long finish. It should age very well. Note that no 2011 Cluster M45 was produced. LPB Feb 2015. James Halliday 97
WA 90. Deep garnet-purple in color, the 2012 Trumps Shiraz is scented of crushed blueberries and blackberries with hints of charcoal, coffee and licorice. Medium to full-bodied, it fills the mouth with black fruit flavors and is framed by medium level, rounded tannins and just enough acid to refresh on the finish with good length. Drink it now to 2018. LPB May 2014.
Wine Advocate 97/100 "The purple/black 2005 Evil Incarnate Shiraz (230 cases) was aged for 36 months in new French oak (now entirely absorbed by the wine) and offers up an other-worldly, kinky perfume of liquid slate, licorice, pencil lead, smoked meat, blueberry, and blackberry jam. This high-octane Shiraz is full-bodied, voluptuous, thick, and rich, with gobs of succulent, spicy blue and black fruits, enough ripe tannin for 6-8 years of further evolution, and a long, pure finish. It should be at its best from 2015 to 2035. " WA 97/100 Feb 2009
WA 95-98 The 2006 Evil Incarnate Shiraz stains the glass as it delivers aromas of sage, rosemary, blueberry, and chocolate. Rich, full-bodied, super-concentrated, and succulent on the palate, this impeccably balanced effort has sucked up all its oak. It has enough structure to evolve for several years and should drink well through 2021. JM Oct 2009.
WA 96-99 The 2006 F U Shiraz exhibits aromas of pencil lead, scorched earth, espresso, truffle, and blueberry compote. It, too, is tasting surprisingly forward but, according to Ringland, “it will go into a black hole and emerge in a new dimension”. JM Dec 2009
WA 98 There are 230 cases of the stupendous, generically named 2005 The Wine Shiraz (a bit of understatement akin to calling The Band a generic rock group). This hulking, brooding effort was aged for 36 months in new French oak and offers up a splendid bouquet of smoked meat, bacon, mineral, scorched earth, blueberry compote, and blackberry liqueur. Opulent, multi-tiered, and thoroughly hedonistic, this sexy, super-intense Shiraz will amply reward a decade of cellaring and should drink well through 2040. JM Oct 2009.
WA 95-98 The 2006 The Wine Shiraz is nicknamed “the show pony” by Ringland. It offers a similar aromatic profile and satiny, succulent fruit but comes off as a bit more forward and elegant on the palate. It conceals enough fine-grained tannin to support 6-8 years of additional cellaring. JM Dec 2009.
WA 97 Clarendon Hills’ flagship is the 2007 Syrah Astralis. It is an exemplar of what old vines and a great terroir can achieve in a less than great vintage. Aromas of pain grille, pencil lead, tar, underbrush, meat, licorice, and blackberry lead to a burly, masculine version of Astralis. It has tremendous grip, plenty of fine-grained tannin, layers of savory fruit, and 10-12 years of aging potential. Patience will be required. JM Oct 2009.
WA 92 The 2005 Syrah Bakers Gully offers fragrant aromas of smoke, bacon, tar, mulberry, and blueberry compote. Perhaps the most forward of the Syrah selections, it can be enjoyed in its youth but should drink well through 2020. JM Oct 2007.
WA 94 The impressive 2001 Syrah Brookmans Vineyard reveals a saturated blue/purple color as well as gorgeous aromas of smoke, licorice, acacia flowers, and black fruits. Full-bodied and dense, with nearly the volume and palate persistence of the 2002, this killer Syrah should age effortlessly for 20 years. RPJ Aug 2003.
WA 95 A black, sexy beast, the 2004 Syrah Brookman (aged in 50% new French oak) offers up amazingly full-bodied, intense, blackberry fruit intermixed with notions of roasted coffee, flowers, and creme de cassis. Full-bodied, rich, beautifully textured, opulent, and long, it should drink well for 10-15 years. It appears to be slightly more forward than it was last year. RPJ Oct 2006.
WA 95 The 2006 Syrah Brookman Vineyard was aged in 100% new oak. Complex both aromatically and on the palate, it will benefit from extended cellaring of 8-10 years. JM Dec 2009
WA 93 The 2007 Syrah Brookman features violets, blueberry compote, and blackberry liqueur-like aromas leading to a dense, flavorful, rich Syrah with plenty of underlying tannin. All components are well-integrated but this is a backward effort that will require extended cellaring the winery suggests a drinking window of 2017 to 2040. JM Dec 2009.
WA 92 Very deep garnet-purple colored, the 2008 Brookman Vineyard Syrah has a few reduced, rubbery notes to begin leading to warm cassis, scorched earth, smoked meat, black pepper, cassia and cedar. It’s very rich and condensed on the palate, giving and high level of grainy tannins, refreshing acidity and a long savory finish. Drink it from 2013 to 2020+. LPB Dec 2010.
WA 95 One of McLaren Vale’s most astonishing Syrahs is Clarendon Hills’ amazing 2004 Syrah Hickinbotham. Its inky/blue/purple hue is accompanied by aromas and flavors of creme de cassis, smoked meats, melted licorice, coffee beans, graphite, and bacon fat. Extremely full-bodied, powerful, and rich, with moderately high tannin, huge structure as well as massive concentration and intensity, but a sense of elegance, balance, and equilibrium, it should be cellared for 2-3 years, and drunk over the following two decades. RPJ Oct 2006
WA 93 The 2008 Hickinbotham Vineyard Syrah is deep garnet-purple in color and gives a minty / eucalypt laced nose with a core of kirsch, blackberry compote, crushed blueberries, mace, vanilla and anise. Crisp and well balanced in the mouth, it has medium-firm fine textured tannins, a good amount of fleshy fruit and a long finish with some earth notes poking through. Approachable now, this Syrah should drink well to 2020. LPB Dec 2010.
WA 96+ Notions of melted tar, blackberries, liquid minerals, and charcoal emerge from the inky/purple-colored 2003 Syrah Hickinbotham Vineyard. Revealing a meaty richness along with great concentration, length, purity, and definition, it is a tour de force in winemaking. This amazing Syrah should age effortlessly for two decades." RPJ - Wine Advocate Oct 2005
WA 97 The 2005 Syrah Hickinbotham Vineyard is opaque purple-colored with aromas of crushed rocks, toasty oak, tar, licorice, bacon, blueberry, and blackberry. Muscular and large in scale, it will profit from a decade of cellaring and drink well through 2030. JM Oct 2007.
WA 97+ The 2006 Syrah Hickinbotham Vineyard combines a voluptuous flavor profile with enough ripe tannin to evolve for 6-8 years. Drink it from 2015 to 2031. JM Feb 2009.
WA 93 The 2007 Syrah Hickinbotham has slightly muted aromas of mineral, underbrush, spice box, blackberry, and blueberry. On the palate it displays a stern personality with plenty of underlying structure and some austerity. It has excellent balance, depth, and length which will be fully exhibited in another 4-6 years. JM Dec 2009.
WA 93 The dense purple-hued 2003 Syrah Liandra Vineyard reveals robust, meaty, smoky bacon fat characteristics along with black fruits and a hint of tar. Long and substantial, with a pure, well-balanced finish, it will drink well for 10-15 years. RPJ Oct 2005.
WA 92 The 2004 Syrah Liandra was fashioned from 100-year-old vines grown in clay and sandy soils. Its inky/purple color is followed by a big, sweet nose of creme de cassis, blackberries, tar, and hints of smoke and bay leaves. Full-bodied, opulent, and rich with low acidity as well as sweet tannin, it can be drunk young or cellared for 10-15+ years. RPJ Oct 2006.
WA 93 Deep garnet-purple colored, the 2008 Liandra Vineyard Syrah has earthy, slightly musky notes over warm berry fruit, cassia, nutmeg, vanilla and anise. Full and voluptuous, it’s well supported by medium-firm rounded tannins and high acidity, lending pleasant texture through the long finish. Drinking now, it should develop nicely and cellar to 2018+. LPB Dec 2010.
WA 92+ The 2007 Syrah Liandra is a bit more reticent aromatically. On the palate it has plenty of sweet black and blue fruit, pepper, and other savory notes as well as outstanding length. It will benefit from 2-3 years of cellaring and drink well through 2019. JM Oct 2009.
WA 92 Deep garnet-purple colored, the 2008 Liandra Vineyard Syrah has earthy, slightly musky notes over warm berry fruit, cassia, nutmeg, vanilla and anise. Full and voluptuous, it’s well supported by medium-firm rounded tannins and high acidity, lending pleasant texture through the long finish. Drinking now, it should develop nicely and cellar to 2018+. LPB Dec 2010.
WA 95 "The exceptionally fragrant, dark purple 2003 Syrah Moritz Vineyard boasts an extraordinary perfume of acacia flowers, blackberries, cassis, roasted meats, and subtle wood. With fabulous concentration, an expansive, savory texture, well-integrated acidity, alcohol, and wood, and a remarkable finish with plenty of sweet tannin, it can be drunk now or cellared for 12-15 years. " Wine Advocate Oct 2005
WA 95 An amazing performance, even better than last year’s showing from tank, the 2004 Syrah Moritz is produced from one of Clarendon Hills’ youngest vineyard sites (planted in 1975). The wine was aged in 42% new French oak for 18 months prior to being bottled unfined and unfiltered. Gorgeous aromas of flowers, blueberries, cassis, and meat jump from the glass of this cuvee. With huge body and a rich, intense style, Bratasiuk claims it is his hypothetical blend of a Cornas and Hermitage, although it possesses more fruit than most of those wines. It should drink well for a minimum of 15 years. Roman Bratasiuk is one of Planet Earth’s...
WA 96 The 2005 Syrah Moritz Vineyard was sourced from “only” 30-year-old vines. It offers floral notes, cassis, bacon, smoked meat, and blueberry compote. Opulent and sweet with gobs of flavor, it should have a 20 year lifespan. JM Oct 2007
WA 95 The 2006 Syrah Moritz Vineyard is more structured, with 5-7 years of aging potential. Roman Bratasiuk’s Clarendon Hills is one of the world’s great wine estates. The wines are all 100% varietal, produced from Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah. The vineyards are all ungrafted, planted on their own roots, most of them with very old vines. 100% new French barrels are used for the Merlot and Cabernets, and 50-100% new for the Syrahs depending upon the vineyard. The wines typically spend 18 months in oak prior to bottling without fining or filtration. All of the above 2006 bottlings were reviewed from barrel samples in Issue 173. The...
WA 94+ The more statuesque 2007 Syrah Moritz delivers a complex perfume of meat, hung game, Asian spices, incense, and blueberry. Mouth-filling and structured on the palate, this well-balanced effort has superior grip and concentration. It should be in full form with 5-7 years of cellaring. JM Dec 2009.
WA 93 The 2008 Moritz Vineyard Syrah possesses a deep garnet-purple color and offers warm blackberry and black currant notes with some vanilla, toast, cumin seed, fennel seed and damp earth plus a whiff of truffles. Full-bodied with medium-firm grainy tannins, concentrated fruit and high acid, it finishes long with lingering Indian spice flavors. Delicious now, it should keep to 2018. LPB Dec 2010.
WA 95 The 2005 Syrah Onkaparinga delivers scents of toasty oak, crushed rock, pencil lead, game, bacon, and blueberry. Voluptuous but impeccably balanced, it has enough structure to evolve for 8-10 years and should drink well through 2030. JM Oct 2007.
WA 94. The 2006 Syrah Onkaparinga was reviewed as a barrel sample in Issue 173. From a better vintage, it is a fragrant, relatively forward, spicy, layered and friendly Syrah that will evolve for another 4-6 years. JM Dec 2009.
WA 93 In a vintage that seemed to produce lean, structured, sinewy wines, the 2007 Syrah Onkaparinga borders on opulence, a rarity in 2007. Complex aromas of incense, violets, spice box, bacon, blueberry, and blackberry are followed by a medium to full-bodied, dense, sweetly-fruited wine with layers of flavor, excellent density, and well concealed structure. It will improve in the cellar over the next 4-6 years and drink well through 2022 and even longer according to the winery. JM Dec 2009.
WA 92. The 2008 Onkaparinga Vineyard Syrah is very deep garnet-purple in color, revealing notes of tar and tires over fruit conserve, warm black currant, licorice, loam, vanilla, cedar, meat and damp leaves. Ripe and fleshy in the mouth, it has a solid backbone of high acid and medium-firm fine tannins, finishing long and earthy. It should be best from 2013 to 2020+. LPB Dec 2010.
WA 97 The 2005 Syrah Piggott Range is quite backward currently. Glass-coating, it is deep crimson in color with mineral notes, violets, spice box, black pepper, espresso, smoked game, and blueberry aromatics. Deceivingly opulent, it has enough structure to merit 8-10 years of cellaring and should make old bones. Drink it through 2035. JM Oct 2007.
WA 95 The 2007 Syrah Piggott Range offers a kinky, sexy bouquet of earth, bacon, game, incense, and assorted black and blue fruits. Rich and layered, this is a dense, packed, and impeccably balanced powerhouse that will require 8-10 years to reveal its full potential. This lengthy effort will easily provide pleasure through 2027. JM Dec 2009.
WA 95 The 2008 Piggott Range Vineyard Syrah has a very deep garnet-purple color and intensely minty, ripe blackberry and fresh black currant aromas plus some alpine floor, cinnamon and kirsch. Very crisp, very rich and concentrated, it gives a high level of fine-grained tannins and very long seductive finish. Give it 2-3 more years and drink it 2014-2022+. LPB Dec 2010.
Buy 6 or more and pay 42sgd/bottle. "From five vineyards in Young, largely 1654 and PT23 clones, 2-3 days cold soak, mostly open-fermented with pneumatic pigeage, some whole bunches included, cultured yeast, 5-8 days post-ferment maceration, matured in French oak (15-20% new) for 11 months. The usual (if that be the right word) Clonakilla signature of perfectly balanced fruit, tannins and oak, always complex yet always with great mouthfeel, black fruits to the fore, with a gentle sprinkle of spice and pepper." JH 94 Sept 2017
Buy 6 or more and pay 42sgd/bottle. Wine Front 94 points. I’ve liked a great many of the previous releases of this wine but this is my favourite of the lot. It’s a ripper. Balanced, well fruited, spice-laden, perfumed, floral and then sweetly exotic. It smells and tastes beautiful, and is so finely etched with tannin; it has everything exactly where you’d like it to be. I’d send a case of this straight into the pool room but I’d like my stash kept a lot closer to me than that and, besides, I don’t have a pool room anyway. Buy. Tasted: Jul 18; Alcohol: 14%; Closure: Screwcap; Drink: 2018-2035+; Rated: 94 Points; Campbell...
Buy 6 or more and pay 52sgd/bottle. James Halliday 96 points. Full crimson-purple; while not due for release until early '18, as at June '17 this medium to full-bodied wine was already kicking up its heels. There is a masterful and utterly harmonious blend of dark fruits, warm spices, ripe tannins and French oak. The very large X-factor is its freshness, which will underwrite its very long life. Bargain basement shelf. 96 pts JH.
Buy 6 or more and pay 52 sgd/bottle. James Halliday 97 points. This has class stamped all over it from the moment you first taste it, sweeping away any necessity to describe the colour or bouquet; it creates a sparkling river of dark fruits that run from the tip of the tongue through to the elegant, but oh so complex, finish and aftertaste. Exhilarating. Drink by: 2045; Price: $45.00; Alcohol: 13.5; Rating: 97 Points & Special Value Star; James Halliday Wine Companion, 94 points, Campbell Mattinson, The Wine Front: “I hope and pray that Clonakilla O’Riada Shiraz remains at this price level. It’s not about me but: I love this wine....
James Halliday 96 points. James Suckling 96 points. "The bright hue and perfumed, spicy red berry bouquet run true to type for this modern classic, setting the bar for the co-fermented blend many years ago. It has a set of flavours that are unique, and can fool even expert tasters in blind tastings, its cross-thatched flavours need careful navigation to decide whether it's from Cote Rotie or Canberra." James Halliday, 96 points. A deep-set nose, brooding almost; this has beef stock, high quality dark chocolate and cocoa powder notes, opening to reveal a wealth of ripe and bright summer berries, dark plums and a granite-like layer. This has...
James Halliday 98 points. "When placed next to '16 O'Riada, the colour seems light (though bright), but the perfumed, spicy bouquet with red flowers and fruits doesn't prepare you for the intensity and piercing length of the beautifully balanced medium-bodied palate. This is a truly glorious wine that draws you back again and again to explore the wealth of red fruit flavours, and the majesty of its textures and flavours."
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