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Wines With A High Value For Money Index Is What We Seek, So Buy Them When On Special
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Defeated Again by Sales Drop

- what to do -

Offer Something Rare

Barbarossa Benjamin Parker Single Barrel Selection
Valley Blend No.2 Barossa Valley 2013 14.5%

Benjamin said to call this the lost barrel. This was in response to me asking for something - anything - to rev up sales. Retail is like no other game as if you are going well it will not last long. I played his hand on this one and with some reluctance it was passed over, ‘should be sold for $10.99’ was his parting comment. Nope out is goes at $99. Limit of one case per order as I am told it is rare and special.

Rare and Special

Barbarossa Benjamin Parker Single Barrel Selection Valley Blend No 2 Barossa Valley 2013 14.5%

This single barrel is an early creation which was isolated and left to rest in better oak. There are 33 cases. This is what I wrote a year ago about the general concept.

It is natural for the winemakers to want to experiment. Some of these are released as Bin Numbered Red Trials. When satisfied things are right a new brand is created. This is the second Barbarossa and like the 2012 is a heavyweight, field blend packed with weight and power.

It contains many varieties though the idea of the trials is to find a natural combination of flavours which move away from single variety wines. I like the term of Valley Blend or Field Blend, less mono-culture and more as grapes were once grown as in old vineyards where the varieties are mixed and enter the winery already blended.

Shiraz has moved to very high prices so the Barbarossa is built around full flavoured varieties like Mataro which are cheaper plus others we accumulate which have no natural home. The European have been making similar combinations for hundreds of years and the Barbarossa is inspired by the field blends of the Cote du Rhone.

The wine drinks well now but has the depth to be put aside for many years should you wish. All up the winemaker Benjamin Parker has done a terrific job.

logo The price is $8.25 a bottle or $99 a case

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Nature or nurture, for most table wine its about 50-50 but for the wines we sell we like it 70-30.

What happens when six winemakers divide up six tonnes of grapes into identical lots and make wine? This exercise has been reported on many times with similar results. Since our six winemakers have different ideas and equipment you get six unique wines, some strikingly different.

What these exercises attempt to show is how much of the taste in your bottle is provided by nature and how much develops from the winemaking. It’s a tough call with no right answer and I see it as a 50% to 50% thing which varies a bit depending on the wine style and the climatic influence.

I will tell you something else I have learnt. Even if perfect controls are in place with identical equipment and using robots not humans, any tasting panel will find differences; if they taste without this knowledge.

The human imagination does wondrous things and the wine debates I have observed over minutiae are glorious to witness. Looking back I guess I was involved in a few but now-oh not now.
All of this we bear in mind when we make wine and buy wine. We like to sell wines that show most of the flavour came from the nature side and try to do as little as possible before it is bottled. During 2015-2016 when Benjamin was running many red wine trials we learnt that blending what nature provided could indeed lead to 2+2 becoming greater than 4.

When playing with the second wine to make the Barossa Valley field blend we call Barbarossa a small batch was so impressive it was further isolated and given ‘secondary’ treatment with enhanced oak.

This wine is released today and I urge purchase as its exceptional and keenly priced. Recall these blends contain only small amounts of Shiraz so look for a big Barossan displaying what a mix of other varieties achieves.

30 Day Pricing Guarantee:
After buying wine it is most annoying to find it cheaper shortly afterwards. Currently Ben and I find selling on-line most turbulent. To hold our ground I confess to moving prices around far more than usual. Please notify Nicole or Claire of any upsetting price moves and they will then issue a credit.

Next wine tasting date: Glug's next Sales and Wine Tasting Event will be held in February on Friday 23rd, Saturday 24th and Sunday 25th.

Kitts Creek
Barossa Valley
Cabernet Sauvignon 2015

I’m not a believer in the idea that each grape variety reaches some ideal of perfection within a narrow climate-weather range. Rather I see a broad range of flavours as best suited to the varied tastes of those who fancy good wine.

I refer of course to the view that a cool, maritime climate brings out the best in Cabernet Sauvignon. Yet I have enjoyed Lakes Folly Cabernets and the best of the Clare Valley and the Barossa Valley and the more variety the better, from warm or cool regions. Of course you must try Bordeaux, Coonawarra, and Margaret River but I have no doubt that a Barossa Valley Cabernet is also a great wine.

I have fond memories of Penfolds Barossa Cabernets, those from the Wolf Blass premium colour range, and startling mature Orlando Cabernets from the 1950s. Thus when given the chance to take a few tonnes of Cabernet from 2015 we leapt at the opportunity to increase our holdings.
The result is this fabulous wine, plush and fruity and dripping with intense flavours - how can you go wrong.

logo The price is $9.99 per bottle

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Kitts Creek
Barossa Valley
Shiraz 2015

This Kitts Shiraz is a great wine from a very special place, with winemaker Parker delivering far more than you would expect., or over-delivering as they say in the trade. Kitts Creek is in the far north of the Barossa Valley which is where the grapes also come from.

The creek in turn is named after the town of St Kitts which is on the northern lip of the valley, though the town is gone and the only residents live in the two, converted, original churches. Many good wines come from this region and an example is Thorn Clarke, a company with extensive vineyards near St Kitts and they regularly pick up trophies and golds.

While the Barossa Valley is remarkably even it does rise from south to north over 100 metres and the extra heat of the north is balanced by the cooler evenings and at times cooling breezes from the west.

What determines the flavours in your wine is complicated but whatever the reasons we are indeed blessed to be able to buy great wines like this for keen prices.

logo The price is $9.99 per bottle

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Princeland Watch Limestone Coast Cabernet Sauvignon 2015
The south-eastern corner of South Australia is known as the Limestone Coast.

It extends from the Victorian border west to the mouth of the Murray River. I know the country well and the beaches on a warm, gentle day are paradise.

Mostly though the winds from the great mega Southern Ocean sweep this country and lets just say it is bracing. The attraction for vineyards is this cooling aspect and a range of interesting wines come from Robe-Mount Benson, Mount Gambier and more famous regions like Coonawarra and Padthaway.

We find very good value in the reds offered from this region and these we hold in mature oak and when stocks have built make a blend which is released under the Princeland brand.

We have been pleased with our last few releases and again strongly recommend the 2015 as you get a lot of complex flavours for a modest price.

logo The price is $6.99 per bottle
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Big Red Mix No.14
from South Australia

A few alterations to No 13 means a change to No 14 though the highlight is still the Village Belle Mourvedre though in second place comes the Hope Farm McLaren Vale Grenache. Honourable mentions go to the P. B. Burgoyne McLaren Vale Cabernet and the rather stout Ploughman. The joy of buying a mixed dozen is keeping up with what we do and concentrating on what is in each bottle plus the price is attractive.

Big Red Mix No. 14 from South Australia Mixed Dozen contains one bottle each of the following wines:
Oakley Adams Padthaway Shiraz 2014
Cameron County 'Red Post' Coonawarra Cabernet 2013
P. B. Burgoyne McLaren Vale Cabernet 2014
Princeland Watch Limestone Coast Cabernet Sauvignon 2013
Light & Finniss Adelaidean Bin 536 Dry Red 2012
PB Burgoyne Adelaide Hills Merlot Cabernet 2011
Trennert 'West Winds' McLaren Vale Cabernet 2014
Village Belle Barossa Valley Mouvedre 2014
Farmers & Growers 'Ploughman' South Australia Classic Dry Red 2013
Shearers 'Comb' South Australia Cabernet Merlot 2013
Telegraph Road South Australia Classic Dry Red 2013
Hope Farm McLaren Vale Grenache 2013

logo The price is $89.88 per case

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