The Beast Shiraz
MEMBERS CELLAR RELEASE 2019
Like the fabled character, the Beast is big and bold, yet has a beautiful soft side…
Selected from a single block high on the hill, where the soils are shallow and the sunlight is even, you can expect the Beast to exhibit great concentration of flavour and richness, with soft grippy tannins.
97 points - James Halliday Wine Companion
Like all great vineyard sites, this block’s expression of rich fruit and ripe, supple tannins result from the interaction between two key variables: soil and microclimate. Red clay loam topsoil overlying massive clay with bluestone at depth allow the creation of naturally low yields with intensive flavours. The block’s position is elevated and enjoys long, even sunlight exposure, further intensifying the aromatic and flavour profile.
2014 – Solid rainfall through June and July filled the soil profile thus providing a great start to the growing season. This was followed by an extremely dry and hot spring combined with unusually high winds at flowering. These challenging conditions continued on through summer until the middle of February when a significant rainfall event signalled the end of summer and a return to mild days. This last minute reprieve from the heat was critical for the vintage, resulting in slowed ripening and therefore increased opportunity for flavour development. One of the most unique Barossa vintages in recent history, and in my opinion will prove to be one of Hentley Farm’s best.
The fruit was crushed, de-stemmed and left on skins in open top fermenters for 8-10 days. After an early heat spike, a slow fermentation was achieved with temperatures ranging from 15-18C. Cap management included a combination of open pump-overs and hand plunging. Once fermentation was completed the wine was basket pressed to a combination of new (60%) and old French barrels, where it underwent natural malolactic fermentation. The wine spent a total of 22 months maturation in oak. No fining or filtration were used in the production of this wine. Winemaker - Andrew Quin
Black olives, liquorice stick and blackberry play the leading role on the nose and are supported by toasty almonds and spicy vanillin. Traditional Beast tannins line the front of the palate before a more subtle mid palate loaded with black fruits and forest berries. At the back dark fruits continue and combine with dark chocolate and vanillin, a finish that seems to never end!
Analysis: Alcohol 14.8% Acid 6.8 pH 3.63 Sugar Dry (<1.0g/L)