Thistledown, Where Eagles Dare Single Vineyard Shiraz, Eden Valley, Barossa, Australia, 2019
Masters of Wine, Giles Cooke & Fergal Tynan, founded Thistledown Wines in 2010 after discovering iconic vineyard sites in the McLaren Vale, Barossa Valley and Adelaide Hills.
They make hand-made, small batch wines that perfectly illustrate the benefits of great sites and intelligent, minimalist winemaking.
Perched high above the Barossa, the Eden Valley can be a precarious but highly rewarding place in which to grow grapes. This single vineyard, at 550m above sea level is hauntingly beautiful. Home to the majestic wedgetail eagle, the soils composed of pink quartz and ironstone, provide a formidable substrate in which the vines takes a tenuous hold. Fruit is sourced from one low yielding block in Joel Mattschoss’ Mengler’s Hill vineyard. The fruit is hand-picked and transferred to the winery.
20% of the total weight is placed in whole bunches in a concrete egg while the balance is crushed and placed on top. A spontaneous fermentation with no physical extraction aims to capture the rugged beauty of the vineyard while preserving the energy and vitality that are the hallmarks of our style. A brief post fermentation maceration is followed by pressing and transfer to 300 litre French hogsheads, of which 50% are new. 12 months later, the wine is bottled unfined and unfiltered.
Type: 300 litre French hogsheads
% wine oaked: 100
% new oak: 50
Intense, tightly coiled and vital, this wine is like a great orator. Beautifully complex, red and black bramble fruits support the naunces of spice and peppery notes. Every component measured and well timed, the tone lifts and falls, all the while building emotion and resonance. Tension and excitement builds and leads through to a memorable finish. Oh, and it tastes amazing!
Big meaty dishes, with rich and reductive sauces.
The Wine Front 94 Points
Fermented in concrete egg, 20% whole bunch, from a vineyard perched up at 550m above the level of the sea. Perfume and spice over brooding black fruit and dark chocolate. It’s a little bit chewy, rich and packed with nuts and dark chocolate, but has that layer of spice and perfume coming through which lightens and adds contour and detail. Tannin is thick and gummy, the finish long and rolling. It’s an excellent expression of Barossa Shiraz, and very nicely turned out too. 94 Points, GW
Robert Parkers The Wine Advocate 93 Points
Hints of crushed stone and dried herbs accent the blueberry-scented nose of the 2019 Where Eagles Dare Shiraz. Sourced from a vineyard at 550 meters above sea level, it's a large-scaled wine but one without much in the way of puppy fat. Medium to full-bodied, structured and sinewy, with a generous helping of silky tannins and a lingering, intense finish marked by savory overtones of mocha, anise and dried herbs, it should age well for more than a decade. 93 Points.
6 x 75cl
Award: Robert Parkers The Wine Advocate 93 Points
Award: Robert Parkers The Wine Advocate 95 Points
Award: The Wine Front 96 Points
Award: The Wine Front 94 Points
Award: The Wine Front 94 Points
Award: The Wine Advocate 93 Points
Award: The Wine Front 93 Points
Award: Robert Parkers The Wine Advocate 97 Points