Posts Tagged ‘shiraz’

Barrel Monkeys – 2005 Shiraz

February 18th, 2009

Another wine from the barrel room.  This time we ordered Barrel Monkeys, which is a 2005 Austrailian Shiraz.  The wine comes from Redheads Studio, a Mclaren Vale Studio Winery.  We purchased this wine for $35 and it retails online for $16.

Barrel MonkeysAs you have noticed, my wine reviews are really elementary.  I am a novice.  I figure that the best way to learn tho, is to try and to document.  I one time took a trip to Napa, and learned a couple things that are my “go to” commentary.  Who knows how accurate I am.

So with this wine, we thought it tasted light and fruity.  I thought it had a spicy/peppery smell.  When I mentioned that to LAL, she said “it always just smells like alcohol to me.”

Another item of note, this bottle had a twist off cap.

We would order this again, but we did not give it a rating (out of forgetfulness, not out of “off the charts”)

The winery’s website was underconstruction when I went there, but here is a collection of tidbits found out there on the internet:

From The Wine Buyer:
Englishman Tony Laithwaite (you could call him the British equivalent of Dan Philips) bought an old bar called Red Heads in McLaren Vale, Australia and renamed it Red Heads Studio. He outfitted it with winemaking equipment and invited young, fresh out of college winemakers to try their hand at making small batches of wine with grapes that are usually very ripe from various sources in the region. The attraction is that these new winemakers usual starting jobs are working in wineries as “Barrel Monkeys” whose job is to move hoses and barrels around in a winery. The Studio gives them the opportunity to make wine which is what they really went to school for! This is one of those wines, which also has a completely irreverent label sort of explaining the whole Barrel Monkey job. We can only say that these Barrel Monkeys produced a wine that fans of in your face fruit bombs will enjoy!

This dark, almost opaque colored wine has nice aromas of blackberry and licorice. The juicy, full-throttle flavors hold true to the nose with blackberry, espresso, licorice and a hint of alcohol heat and pepper on the medium length finish. Wine Buyer 90 Points

Sub-Region: FLEURIEU
Appellation: MCLAREN VALE
Grape Varietal: SYRAH
Type: Still wine

From The Wine Spectator:
Raw-edged, with grippy tannins against ripe, red berry and plum flavors, lingering on the firm finish. Needs time to flesh out. Best after 2009. 5,000 cases made. 87 points

St. Jakobi – Shiraz

December 19th, 2008

Lisa and I visited Capri Blue this past week for a dinner and a glass of wine.  When we arrived we found out that it was half price wine bottle night.  We ordered a 2003 Shiraz from the Barossa Valley of Austraila named St. Jakobi.  This wine hailed from the Dutschke winery.  The wine retailed at the restraunt for approx $64, we paid $32.  You can purchase it online currently for $27.

Our Thoughts:
I thought it had a pepper and oaky smell to it.  It appeared to have a some legs.  I asked lisa what it tasted like and she said “it tastes like good wine.”  She also thought it had a hint of honey in the taste.  It held a strong yet not complex finish.  The wine was a nice purple/lavendar hue.  There was a taste of some sort of berry that we could not recognize–a btbnl (berry to be named later).  We gave this wine an 8 out of 10, and we would definetly order it again.

Winery Thoughts:
In 1934 my Grandfather, Oscar Semmler purchased the vineyard and grazing property across the road from where he and his brothers grew up. The property is located at Lyndoch in the Barossa Valley, along side of the “St. Jakobi” Lutheran church and school. It is in the St Jakobi Church where my great grandparents, grandparents, parents and now Brenda and myself have all been married.

The Shiraz grapes for “St. Jakobi” come from this family vineyard, from vines planted in 1975 by Oscar’s son Ken Semmler (my uncle).

We’ve been blessed by having “great dirt”, and a vineyard that consistently produces fruit each year that shows elegance, richness in spice, plum and chocolate like characters.

This 2003 “St Jakobi” Shiraz is made using the same techniques I started with back in 1998.

We harvest the vineyard on 2 or sometimes 3 occasions, picking across the flavour spectrum, ferment in open fermenters and age the wine in a combination of both French and American oak hogsheads, purchased from 9 different coopers. This allows me to combine the wines from those better barrels to make a more interesting wine showing the full potential of the Shiraz fruit.

Winemaker: Wayne Dutschke
Vineyard: Ken Semmler’s Lyndoch Vineyard
Region: Lyndoch, Barossa Valley, South Australia
Harvest Date: 27th February and 7th March 2003
Alcohol: 14.5%
Oak Maturaton: 24 months in New and Older French and American Hogsheads
Cellaring potential: 5-8 years

91 pts, WineSpectator, December 05
88 pts., WineFront Monthly May 2005
92 pts, Tyson Stelzer “Wine Press”
94 pts, James Halliday Australian Wine Companion 2007

This Week I'm Thinking About: Jonathan Wilt