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Thorn Clarke Shotfire Shiraz 2015

ID No: 443255
Country:Australia
Region:Barossa Valley
Winery:Thorn Clarke - Shotfire
Grape Type:Shiraz
Vintage:2015
Bottle Size:750 ml
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Thorn Clarke Shotfire Shiraz 2018

Thorn Clarke Shotfire Shiraz is made from 100% Shiraz. 


Striking deep red-purple in color. A rich, voluptuous wine with aromas of blackcurrant and mulberries accompanied by notes of smokey oak and hints of cloves. The palate is filled with dark fruits and chocolate backed up by taut tannins and lingering oak.



Story:

When the Clarke forebearers discovered gold in 1870 at the Lady Alice mine in the Barossa goldfields, so began a family dynasty intrigued by geology. A fine legacy that is reflected today in the terroir of our vineyards. The Shotfire range immortalizes the Shotfirer's hazardous job of setting and lighting the charges in the mines.


Fran shares his story on how he discovered Thorn-Clarke:
     "It was October 2001 and I was searching for and sourcing for Australian wines, as it was clear that Australia was going to become the "next big thing." After tasting about 100 assorted wines, I decided I liked the style of Barossa, Shiraz best - chocolate, cherries, mint and eucalyptus - so I started focusing on Barossa growers (years later, Barossa Shiraz would develop its reputation as the Icon Shiraz for Australia).
     Late on a Thursday afternoon, the carrier delivered a beat-up box of 12 bottles from Australia, 10 of which were leaking. The box was from a guy named Steve Machin, who had just left Hardy's and was beginning work with the Clarke family on setting up a possible new brand. The samples were sticky and messy, but I popped the corks anyway ..... and I was glad that I did. The wine inside tasted like Christmas - mint, eucalyptus, camphor, and evergreen aromas. Great acidity, color, flavor and length of finish - very tasty. These samples were so good and so exciting, especially compared to what I had tasted prior, that I immediately called the number on the card. I didn't realize that it was a Perth number (Western Australia) and it was actually 3:00 in the morning. It turned out I was calling the residence of David and Cheryl Clarke, where a sleepy Cheryl answered the phone. I told her, you don't know who I am, but we are going to be doing business together very soon, and lots of it! After a few months of talking, faxing (yes, faxing) and sorting out the details, I began importing their wines.
     That super-star wine from the busted box of samples is the wine we know today as Shotfire Shiraz. It was originally called Stone Jar, but fortunately we came up with a better name. Many years and vintages later, I'm still glad to be importing Shotfire Shiraz and other Thorn-Clarke selections .... and I'm still glad that Cheryl Clarke woke up for that phone call."



Thorn Clarke Shotfire Cabernet Sauvignon-Shiraz 2015

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Thorn Clarke Shotfire Cabernet Sauvignon Shiraz is made from 76% Cabernet Sauvignon, 24% Shiraz.

14 months in Oak, 40% new combination of French and American – French for Cabernet and American for Shiraz

When the Clarke forebearers discovered gold in 1870 at the Lady Alice mine in the Barossa goldfields, so began a family dynasty intrigued by geology. A fine legacy that is reflected today in the terroir of our vineyards. The Shotfire range immortalizes the Shotfirer's hazardous job of setting and lighting the charges in the mines.

Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz blends are uniquely Australian and goes against the traditional wine-making grain. This wine embodies the Clarke families tendency to swim “against the current”. In the 1980’s when many growers were pulling out vines, David and Cheryl were planting.

Deep red in color with brick hues on release. Leafy Cabernet varietal Cabernet is balanced by ripe plum, licorice and slight eucalyptus characters on the nose. Upfront dark fruits and long grainy tannins dominate the palate. In addition, maturation on French oak adds spice and cedar-like characters. The wine has a distinct acid backbone which gives the wine long persistence.

The grapes are crushed and de-stemmed into fermenters. Yeast is added immediately once in fermenter and the ferments are pumped over twice daily to maximize color, tannin and flavor extraction. Cooling is used to ensure ferments remain in the 22-25°C range which will allow the fruit to display maximum fruit expression.

Pairs well with Australian lamb chops, rack of lamb.

 


Review:

"The 2015 Shotfire Cabernet Sauvignon Shiraz is a 76-24 blend. It favours the Cabernet in its aromas and flavour profile as well, with mint and cassis leading the way, the Shiraz serving mainly to help round out the mid-palate and provide some juiciness to offset the dry Cabernet tannins. It should drink well for several more years. - Joe Czerwinski"

- Robert Parker's The Wine Advocate (Issue # 238, August 31st 2018), 91 pts

 Wine Advocate: 91
Thorn Clarke Shotfire Quartage 2016

 

Thorn Clarke Shotfire Quartage is made from  47% Cabernet Sauvignon, 31% Cabernet Franc, 14% Merlot, 8% Petit Verdot .

The fruit was harvested at night. Fermentation was carried out in a variety of small capacity fermenters. After pressing the parcels were filled to French oak (12 months) for maturation. The wine was racked after six months and the parcels were blended to form the final wine.

Review:

"Burnt confectionary, rich and juicy-grippy palate. Delivers a true varietal expression with a fine, integrated finish."

- Drinks Trade (June 2019), 92 pts

2016 Thorn-Clarke Shotfire Quartage Barossa Valley - 94 PTS & Gold Medal - MIWC

"It is sweetly fruited and fabulously fragrant on the nose showing blackberry, blueberry jam, vanilla, roasted nut and mixed spice characters, leading to a concentrated palate that is plump and fleshy. It is generous and flavoursome with plenty of delectable flavours, finishing long and satisfying. - Sam Kim."  - Wine Orbit (2019), 94 pts




 

 94 Points
Thorn Clarke Shotfire Quartage 2018

 

Thorn Clarke Shotfire Quartage is made from  47% Cabernet Sauvignon, 31% Cabernet Franc, 14% Merlot, 8% Petit Verdot .

The fruit was harvested at night. Fermentation was carried out in a variety of small capacity fermenters. After pressing the parcels were filled to French oak (12 months) for maturation. The wine was racked after six months and the parcels were blended to form the final wine.





 

Thorn Clarke Eden Trail Shiraz 2017

Thorn Clarke Eden Trail Shiraz is made from 100 percent Shiraz.

Lifted aromas of spicy dark cherries with a hint of cedary oak. A medium to full bodied wine; the palate is a maze of spice, pepper and dark fruits, the finish is bright and refreshingly clean.


Picked during the cool of night. An intentional minimalistic approach to winemaking to ensure the vineyard character sings. Fermented with a small percentage of stalks and whole berries, in small open fermenters and hand worked twice daily. Warm fermentation is followed by maturation in French oak barrels for 12-16 months (depending on parcel). Minimal fining and filtration prior to bottling.


Asian foods, beef, duck, hard cheese, game, smoked fish, dark chocolate.


Review:

Another very good vintage for this wine, brimming with fresh and bright fruit aromas and flavors. The plum, blackberry and red berry characters are juicy and ripe with no hint of jamminess, and there's a feeling of liveliness and buoyancy on the palate. A dash of pepper and a seasoning of oak add some complexity, and the tannin is gentle but firm enough to do its job. - James Halliday" - Halliday Wine Companion, 95 pts

 95 Points
Thorn Clarke Milton Park Shiraz 2018


Thorn Clarke Milton Park Shiraz is aged for 12 months in American oak barrels.
Deep red color. The wine is deep and rich smelling with dark fruits, plums and spice with some good oak. There is very rich fruit on the palate with plums, blackberry and sweet spice from the oak. The palate is vibrant and young with a flavorsome viscous mouthfeel which will develop complexity with time. There are some slightly chewy tannins which will soften with time and there is great length of fruit flavor.

Product Description

On release Thorn Clarke Shotfire Shiraz has a deep purple colour with a red hue. The wine has a lifted nose of clean blackberry fruit accompanied by mocha and spice. The palate displays sweet fruit characters dominated by blackberry and plum, complimented by cinnamon, clove and nutmeg characters. The wine is full bodied with natural tannin and oak maturation adding texture and complexity to the wine.

Spring rainfall was well below average with several days reaching 30°C. The growing season had even temperatures and little rainfall. Ripening was slow and steady leading to the development of good tannin structure and fruit characters.

The grapes were de-stemmed into fermenters. Ferments were pumped over twice daily to maximize color, tannin and flavor extraction. Cooling is used to ensure ferments remain in the 22-25°C range which allows maximum fruit expression in the wine. Pressing occurs approximately seven days after fermentation commences and the wine is then filled to American oak to mature (14 months in 40% new American hogsheads with the balance going into 2nd and 3rd fill barrels).

   Review:

"Youthful purple. Smoky blackberry, cherry cola and spicecake aromas show very good vivacity and clarity. Lush and appealingly sweet on the palate, offering juicy black and blue fruit preserve flavors and a hint of candied licorice. Shows impressive energy and supple tannins on the finish, which leaves juicy blueberry and peppery spice notes behind. - Josh Raynolds"
- Vinous (Australia Brings the Brawn and the Beauty, October 2017), 91 pts

Winery: Thorn Clarke - Shotfire

The Thorn Clarke Shotfire Estate
The winery owners are David and Cheryl Clarke (born Thorn) and their son Sam is the manager of the winery. The Thorn-Clarke family has a long history in the Barossa - six generations of involvement in the region's world famous wine industry. The Thorns have been grape growers in the Barossa since the 1870's. David Clarke's passion for the wine industry lead to the planting of the Kabininge vineyard outside of Tanunda in 1987, which represents the start of a deeper involvement by the family in the Barossa wine industry. 

Thorn-Clarke Wines was launched in 2002 as a result of the 37 year marriage between David and Cheryl Clarke (nee Thorn). The Thorn family have grown vines in the Barossa since the 1870’s and still proudly own and manage some of the oldest vineyards in the region.
The wine is another reward for geologist David Clarke and his family. The family has planted four diverse Barossa vineyards over the last 20 years, enabling them to blend wines grown from different terroirs which adds complexity and richness to the wine.
“When we started out 20 years ago I knew from my geological research that the varied Barossa geology and soil types offered us a broad palate to work with. Then when we started making trial blends in the 1990s it became clear that the vineyards complemented each other brilliantly and provided us with a new level of flavor complexity. We have blended to take advantage of these sub regional and micro climatic characteristics.”
“Our philosophy is to over-deliver in terms of the quality we offer at each price level.  Wine lovers remember wines which are stunning value and we work hard to ensure that whether people buy the Sandpiper range at $15 or the Shotfire range at $23 they are drinking wines that are excellent value for money.” -David Clarke

The Thorn Clarke Shotfire Vineyards
Outstanding parcels of 100% Barossa Valley fruit are selected from the Kabininge vineyard for these wines which then receive special oak maturation treatment in our Barossa cellars. The result is a rich and voluptuous Barossa Shiraz and an exciting Cuvée.
Vinification techniques: crushing and de-stemming into open fermenters. Pumping over twice daily to maximise color, tannin and flavor extraction. Cooling is used to ensure ferments remain in the 22-25°C range which will allow the wine to display maximum fruit expression. Pressing then occurs approximately 7 days after crushing and the resulting wine is put into French and American oak.
“The key to good Malbec is being able to successfully ripen the fruit. Our St Kitts vineyard at the Northern end of the Barossa provides a fantastic environment to do that.”
“The Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc fruit come from the old vine Kabininge Block near Krondorf on the Barossa Valley flore and they provide wonderful upfront berry fruits; the Malbec from the drier northern St Kitts vineyard balances the cool climate Angaston vineyard Petit Verdot which provides great depth of flavor and intensity, while the Merlot, also from St Kitts, gives the palate a wonderful suppleness. The grainy tannins add to the rich mouth feel of the wine.” -Sam Clarke

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Piron Chenas Quartz is made from 100% Gamay - 60+ years old .

The Chenas Cru is the smallest Beaujolais Cru, not bigger than Côte Rôtie. This is a rare wine. The estate's unique parcel spreads over 22.2 acres of vines on a very steep slope facing East, situated between 310 and 380 meters above sea level. Granitic soils are covered with Quartz crystals and give the wine its own personality.

The vineyard is co-owned by Domnique Piron and Christian Lameloise, whose family owned Lameloise restaurant in Burgundy (3*** Michelin). Decanter classified the wine in the 3 best best bottles of Crus Beaujolais in 2015 (vintage 2013).

Hand harvest, sorting table, part destemming. A first stage of semi carbonic maceration during few days is followed by a more classic Burgundy maceration with « remontages » and « pigeages », for a total of 18-20 days, depending on the vintage.
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Pairs well with complex dishes, meats, leaver, and why not a little pigeon with peas and diced bacon.

Review:

"Beautifully attractive violets and red flowers here, carrying a very fresh impression, as well as an exciting and vibrant yet elegant finish. Exceptionally pure and focused. Drink or hold."

- James Suckling (February 2019), 93 pts


 93 Points
Wolfberger Cremant d' Alsace Brut


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The production of sparkling wine was already known in Alsace in the early 1900's. The Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée (A.O.C.) Crémant d’Alsace began with an official decree in August 1976.
 
Pale golden color. Fine, persistent bubbles. Floral nose with a hint of spiciness, gentle fruitiness (peach, apricot), and lovely balance. Fruity and lively in the palate, it has a clean and crisp finish. This wine will suit any special occasion.


Review:

""Straw color. Bright, fruity, creamy aromas of green apple pastry, peaches in cream, and lemon chiffon with a supple, tangy, finely carbonated, dry-yet-fruity medium body and an effortless, amusing, medium-long white nuts, lime-pineapple sorbet, and minerals finish with no oak. A refreshing, tangy sparkling wine that will shine at the table."
-Beverage Testing Institute, 94 pts (Exceptional)


 

 94 Points
Ron Thorn Shiraz 2014

Deep red with a slight purple hue on release. The wine has a rich mix of dark chocolate infused with coffee bean and black liquorice, then scents of tar, aniseed, raw (pure) soy and black olive on the nose. The palate is expansive, and yet balanced and finessed. An amalgam of dark berried flavors and textural sensations. The 100% new oak is completely absorbed, meshed with ripe tannins, completing a palate of impressive length and youthfulness.

Parcels of fruit for this wine were identified in the vineyard by the winemakers. Daily fruit inspection led to the fruit being harvested at optimum flavor ripeness. The fruit was harvested at night and quickly transported to the winery. The fruit was destemmed to 6T open fermenters for fermentation. A Shiraz specific yeast was selected to ferment the wine and fermentation was carried out at a maximum of 28°C. The fermenter was manually pumped over twice daily in the first half of fermentation to give the winemakers control of color, flavor and tannin extraction. Pump over regimes were adjusted toward the end of fermentation to suit the tannin and flavor extraction of the wine. The cap was completely broken up on each pump over. The wine remained in fermenters for 6-8 days (dependent on parcel) before being pressed, inoculated with malolactic bacteria and filled to American oak (100% new barrels). The wine was racked post malolactic fermentation and returned to the same barrels. The wine was topped every month and after six months racked and returned to the same barrels again. Prior to bottling the parcels were emptied from oak and blended. Minimal fining and filtration was carried out prior to bottling.

 


Review:


"Full-bodied and rich, this is a traditional style of Barossa Shiraz, aged in American oak hogsheads. Faint menthol or dill notes and plenty of vanilla frame plum and mulberry fruit, while hints of green peppercorn and maple syrup add interest to the long finish. Drink now–2030. - Joe Czewinski" - Wine Enthusiast (April 2017), 93 pts

 

2012 Vintage:

Voted Best Shiraz in the World at London's International Wine & Spirit Competition 

 

  

Voted Best Shiraz in the World at London's International Wine & Spirit Competition 

 Wine Enthusiast: 93
Rubus Proprietary Red Blend Australia 2014

Tasting Notes: Deep, dark ruby color, aromas of blue fruits, confectionery and subtle licorice characters, thick luscious palate with good structure and soft finish.

The Blend is 44% Rubired, 31% Durif and 25% Shiraz.

Rubired is a cross between Tinto Cao and Alicante Ganzin (which is itself a cross between Alicante Bouschet and Aramon Rupestris Ganzin). It is known for being particularly adapted to the hot climate and producing dark wines, as the color is not only coming from the grape's skin, but also from the grape juice itself. It was developed in 1958 by H.P. Olmo of the University of California Davis.

Durif, also known as Petite Sirah, is also a cross of two different grape varietals: Syrah and Peloursin. It was created by French botanist François Durif in 1860 while keeping Syrah and Peloursin plants under the same roof; it happened from a natural process called "cross-pollination." The grape itself is known for its very aromatic, plummy character.

Shiraz, which we all know for being the most recognized grape varietal of Australia, brings some minty, spicy and fruity characteristics to the wines.

Grapes are crushed and destemmed then placed in rotary fermenters where three rotations per day break up the cap and extract color and tannin. Commercial yeast is added for fermentation. The juice is pressed to stainless steel for malolactic fermentation, undergoes oak maturation for 9 months, then is stored in stainless steel.

Pairs well with BBQ lamb with roast vegetables.

Morambro Creek Cabernet 2012

Morambro Creek Cabernet is 100 percent Cabernet

Deep purple in color. A rich elegant nose of cassis with overtones of vanilla and coffee. Lush, ripe palate dominated by black fruits, cherry and chocolate. Full bodied with savory, integrated fruit tannins and persistent finish.

Vintage Overview: 2012 was a very good season with predominantly mild, dry days. Yields were generally low and this did result in some excellent parcels of fruit being harvested. Vine-balance was carefully monitored, resulting in fruit that demonstrates the vibrancy and fruit-derived characters that we strive for in our wines.

Winemaking at Morambro Creek is very traditional and labour intensive. Oak maturation takes place using 35% new French barrels. This blend was put together using select barrels from our family  estate that best demonstrate the intensity of our fruit balanced by integrated oak.

Total Acidity: 6.6 g/L 
pH: 3.49 

 


Reviews:

James Halliday Australian Wine Companion 2016, 92 POINTS

Australian Wine Showcase Magazine – March 2015, 95 POINTS

2014 International Wine & Spirits Competition , SILVER MEDAL

2014 San Francisco International Wine Competition, SILVER MEDAL

2014 NZ International Wine Show, GOLD MEDAL

 95 Points
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