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.
"Destemmed, pressed approximately 7 days later, 14 months in American oak (40% new). Rich, layered, mocha/chocolate overtones to the black berry fruits are obvious."
- Halliday Wine Companion (August 2020), 92 pts
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."
Rubus Old Vine Shiraz Barossa Valley is a blend of 98% Shiraz & 2% Viognier, this richly concentrated Barossa Shiraz is indicative of the style for which Australia's top production region is famous. The wine is dark in color, rich and dense. There are ample tannins balanced by the powerful fruit. You will note the hints of blackberries, mint, and eucalyptus flavors upfront and in the finish. Try Rubus Barossa Shiraz with rich dishes like lamb shank, Osso bucco, beef steak or roast duck.
"Blackberry, currant and blueberry flavors are dense, intense and powerful, mingling with black licorice, sage and spice notes, with a brambly undertone. A spicy hint lingers on the finish. Drink now through 2030. 1,200 cases made. - MaryAnn Worobiec"
- Wine Spectator (November 15th 2018), 90 pts
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.
"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
Buccella Cuvee Katrina Eileen Napa Valley is made from 100% Cabernet Sauvignon.
Named after our first-born daughter, Cuvée Katrina Eileen is primarily composed of fruit from a vineyard in the Western Hills of Yountville, where yields are miniscule. The extremely rocky soil of the vineyard produces concentrated clusters of perfectly ripened Cabernet Sauvignon. In German, the name “Katrina” represents purity and fittingly, this wine is made entirely from the Cabernet Sauvignon grape, providing a pure expression of this decadent varietal. It also reflects our daughter’s personality with flavors that are complex, unreserved and expressive.
Always a 100% Cabernet blend, our 2017 Cuvée Katrina Eileen is an opulent and mouth-enriching wine. Captivated by the inky-black color, luscious scents of dark espresso and cinnamon stick leap out, along with powerful elements of graphite and cassis. Remarkably rich and seamless, while boasting flavors of blueberry compote, dark chocolate and black raspberries, this is a compelling and luxurious wine focused upon velvety texture, silky tannins and incredible length. An intentional breadth on the palate and length in the finish are hallmarks of this wine.
Mollydooker Carnival of Love Shiraz is made from 100 percent Shiraz.
This McLaren Vale Shiraz is powerful and expressive. Lifted aromatics of dark berries and smoky oak leap boldly from the glass. With a satin like palate; cherry and satsuma plum flavours develop into decadent dark chocolate and liquorice.
Juicy, soft and plush flavors of root beer–scented cherry and raspberry are spicy and a touch candied, but very generous, showing off caramel and sandalwood accents. Smooth and supple through the long finish, this is impressive for the complexity and focus. Drink now through 2029. 5,204 cases made, 1,692 cases imported
-Wine Spectator 93 Points
Say what you will about the Mollydooker wine style or marketing, there's no denying that Sarah Marquis is able to build wonderful texture into her wines. The 2017 Carnival of Love Shiraz frames powerful dark fruit aromas with strong cedar overtones, but the highlight is the high-end Mollydooker texture—somewhere between heavy cream, plush velvet and Asia's finest silk. As in the Blue Eyed Boy, red raspberry notes emerge on the finish, bringing a sense of freshness and balance to this rich, flavorsome wine.
-Wine Advocate 94 Points
Mollydooker Velvet Glove Shiraz is made from 100 percent Shiraz.
The Velvet Glove is an Australian Shiraz with strength, depth and finesse. The 2017 has a perfumed nose of berries and mixed spice. The first sip gives way to juicy blackberry and cassis, followed closely by decadent dark chocolate and black pepper notes. With the depth of licorice, and a cherry like intensity; the fine lattice of tannins are seamless amongst the fruit, yet still provide that opulent mouthfeel that Velvet Glove is consistently notorious for. A wine of pure indulgence.
Dark black violet in colour, this wine has an intensely spiced nose with fruit aromas of fresh raspberry, plum and blueberry with an edge of tar, mocha and blackberry jam extending the complexity. The palate shows amazing purity of fruit with delicate flavours, fine oak tannins and creamy oak. Simply unique it has the ability to coat your entire mouth with the softest of textures yet unleashes such an intense and amazing array of fruit, completely rich and voluptuous with undeniably elegant. A wine that truly deserves its name, coating your tongue like a Velvet Glove.
The 2017 Velvet Glove Shiraz is reminiscent of a lush, chocolate-covered raspberry, a mouth-filling one imbued with a uniquely plush, supple texture and a lingering finish. There are hints of mint, pepper and anise to bring complexity and a slight savory-herbal edge, but much of this wine's considerable charm is in the way it feels in the mouth—caressing, expansive and complete. -Robert Parker 96 Points
Thorn Clarke Shotfire Shiraz is made from 100% Shiraz.
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).
"Good color; an immaculately balanced and elegant medium-bodied shiraz, benefiting from the cool vintage that has blown freshness into so many wines. Blackberry and red cherry both in the ring. - James Halliday"
- Halliday Wine Companion, 95 pts
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
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.
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
"With a Barossa heritage of six generations, and years of carefully planned vineyard development, it's little wonder that Thorn-Clarke produces fine and true examples of the wines that have made this region world famous.
Our ancestor James Goddard knew where to dig when he discovered gold in 1870 in the Barossa. Ever since our family has been intrigued by geology. A fine legacy reflected in the family's expertise in knowing in which soils to plant vines that produce wines of outstanding varietalcharacter.
This wine is another fine example of Barossa Shiraz. The bougquet has lifted fruit aromas, white the palate displays typical varietal Shiraz characters of chocolate and plum fruit. Expert use of mainly American oak has resulted in subtle vanillin flavors." -David Clarke, Vigneron
Burgo Viejo Rioja Crianza is made from 90% Tempranillo & 10% Graciano.
Red ruby colored wine with violet tones; well-balanced, black fruit, vanilla and coconut flavors. Powerful, complex and silky smooth...classic old style Rioja at a bargain price.
"A tight red with a dense palate of dark berries and chocolate. Full and reserved, yet polished and energetic. Give it two years to soften. Drink in 2020."
- James Suckling (August 2nd 2018), 92 pts
"Well priced and very appealing, this is part of a line up of really enjoyable, harmoniously oaked wines from Burgo Viejo, made from Tempranillo and 5% Graciano. Pepper spicy and refined, with clean, modern, textured blackberry fruit and a fresh, tangy finish. 2019-24."
- TIM ATKIN RIOJA 2019 SPECIAL REPORT, February 2019, 91 pts
Riebeek Cellars Shiraz is made from 100% Shiraz.
Cold soaked for one day and then inoculated with selected yeast.
Fermentation temperature was between 24 - 26 degree Celsius. Malolactic
fermentation was done with French oak chips and American oak staves. This
was then blended with wine matured in 2nd and 3rd fill barrels for 12 months.
Often referred to as Shiraz Country, the Riebeek Valley is renowned for
exceptional Shiraz wines. The Riebeek Shiraz is a lively rich wine, full bodied
with a subdued smokiness on the nose and a pallet of ripe fruit and
Well-balanced and smooth, the aftertaste lingers with the exciting flavors of
Perfect companion to meat, game, duck, goose, pasta and cheese. Serve at
Riebeek Cabernet Sauvignon is made from 85% Cabernet Sauvignon,15 % Shiraz.
An exciting new world style wine with upfront blackcurrant flavors. The black fruit is well-balanced with subtle French oak for a complex nose and an elegant and lingering follow-through. An exceptional example of a lighter style Cabernet Sauvignon that can be enjoyed young. Excellent with red meat dishes or veal.
Dark ruby color. Aromas of cherry, currant, vanilla bean and hint of tar. Full-bodied, with flavors of cherries, cocoa powder and oak. A touch of sweetness on entry with a little bit of air with soft tannins that are starting to integrate well.
The latest step in the project is Vinsacro (formerly Valsacro) Dioro. The earlier Valsacros were made from a field selection of the older vineyards. Now, thanks to the new facility Amador has been able to build an upmarket version of Vinsacro (formerly Valsacro) with a four-stage selection process that includes an initial field selection of the fruit followed by a second table selection as the grapes come into the winery. After fermentation wine from selected tanks is transferred to new French oak barrels for 12-14 months of barrel age. Finally, the best barrels are set aside for Dioro and the remainder used to "upgrade" the normal Vinsacro.
Vinsacro Dioro is a blend of grapes from 100+ year old "vidau" vineyards where many varieties were planted together in the same plot.
Today the grapes are harvested and vinified separately. The final blend depends on the vintage but typically it's Tempranillo (50%), Garnacha (20%) and remaining 30% is a mix of mainly Graciano (10%) & Mazuelo (10%) with a little of Monastrell (5%) & Bobal (5%).
"The top of the range is the 2015 Vinsacro Dioro, a wine that is only produced in excellent vintages. It's a blend of 40% Vidau (the old field blend) plus 45% Tempranillo and 15% Mazuelo, from a slope in the south of the Monte Yerga called Cuesta la Reina, from a big, 120-hectare plot that has been with the Escudero family for generations. It fermented with indigenous yeasts in stainless steel with a long maceration. It matured in new French (70%) and American oak barrels for 18 months. It's still very young and a little shy, with a reticent nose where the lactic and spicy aromas are intermixed with earthy and dark fruit aromas. The palate is full-bodied but perfectly balanced, compact, powerful and serious, with abundant tannins, extract and clout. This should develop nicely in bottle, given its stuffing and balance. An excellent, modern version of a classical Rioja. 20,000 bottles were filled in June 2017. - Luis Gutierrez"
- Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (Issue #235, February 2018), 92 pts
"(sourced from a 100+ year old plot of mixed varieties; aged in new and used French oak barrels for 14 months) Deep, bright-rimmed ruby. Ripe black and blue fruits on the expansive, spice- and smoke-accented nose, along with suggestions of vanilla, candied flowers and cola. The oak qualities recede quickly on the palate, which displays sappy, deeply concentrated boysenberry, black raspberry and spicecake flavors that show a suave blend of richness and energy. Supple tannins build steadily on the penetrating finish, which leaves cherry-cola and baking spice notes behind. - Josh Raynolds"
- Antonio Galloni's Vinous (February 2019), 93 pts
"I loved the 2015 Vinsacro Dioro Rioja, and this beauty is 50% Tempranillo, 20% Grenache, 10% each of Mazuelo and Graciano, and the balance Mourvèdre and Bobal, all of which spent 12-14 months in French oak. It boasts a deep ruby/purple color as well as smoking good notes of black currants, dried herbs, licorice, and background oak. Medium to full-bodied, seamless, and layered on the palate, with terrific fruit and impeccable balance, I suspect it will shine for over a decade."
- Jeb Dunnuck (March 2019), 93 pts
Our Côtes du Rhône Villages is elaborated on the superb Terroir.
The average age of the vines is 34 years; The assembly favors
Grenache, Syrah and Mourvèdre. This complex wine can be kept 8 to 10 years and we
Zanon Petite Sirah Family Vineyards is made from 100% Petite Sirah.
Zanon Petite Sirah is a delicious version of a distinctive varietal grape. This deep dark purple wine shows aromas of blueberries and plum. Complex flavors of blueberry, plum, and black pepper with vanilla and soft oak mingle in the background. Well-structured with firm tannins and the ability to age over many years, there is really nothing ‘petite’ about it! It is 100% Petite Sirah.
The Petite Sirah vineyards are located on the hillsides in the scenic and bucolic setting of the historic Dry Creek Valley. It has been grown side-by-side with Zinfandel in the Dry Creek Valley for over 100 years.
Pairs with roast beef, prime rib, hearty sauces, bold cheeses.