Discover Powell and Son
Friday, April 12, 2019 in News
Surely all the good vineyards in a famous wine region like the Barossa Valley were identified long ago. Especially the old ones. Nothing left to discover, right?
But no. There are neglected and abandoned vineyards to be brought back to life, there are underperforming vineyards, hidden jewels, and there are small parts of larger vineyards consistently yielding outstanding fruit that gets lost bigger blends.
Dave Powell has been nosing around the Barossa Valley for more than 30 years. He’s had his ups and downs, but there’s no denying his vigneron’s instincts and his uncanny ability to coax the best grapes out of a vineyard and the best wines out of the grapes.
Dave Powell of Powell and Sons visits Langtons
He’s also larger than life, gregarious and well-connected, so he’s built a network that gets him more good leads than most.
As the name of his latest venture - Powell & Son - reveals, he has a new business partner, 23-year-old son Callum, fresh from three years of winemaking studies at the University of Adelaide and a vintage with Jean-Louis Chave at Saint-Joseph in the Rhône Valley of France.
The 2016s, from an excellent Barossa vintage, are vintage number three for Powell & Son and come 50-50 from the Barossa Valley and the higher, cooler Eden Valley.
Powell junior grew up with one foot in each region.
All the reds are aged in French oak - a combination of large oak foudres, barriques and puncheons. The vineyards are between 50 and 120 years old.
Callum Powell says: ‘We aim for freshness of fruit, vibrancy and liveliness but will not compromise vineyard expression. All decisions are made based on a balance of these two factors’.
Steinert Flaxman's Shiraz, Eden Valley 2016
The critical reception the 2016s have received is extraordinary. Here are just a few examples, beginning with extracts from two reviews of the 2016 Steinert Flaxman’s Shiraz…
‘...a legendary wine in the making… incredible richness and depth… remarkable elegance and purity… a finish that won’t quit... Bravo!’ 99 points, Jeb Dunnuck
‘...one of the best young Barossa wines I have ever seen… just so damn beguiling and delicious. Amazing…’ 97 points, Mike Bennie, Wine Front
Here’s Jeb Dunnuck, a Shiraz, Grenache and Mataro specialist, on the Brennecke Grenache…
‘...beautiful elixir… gorgeous perfume… seamless, sexy texture… awesome finish... magical… will knock your socks off…’ 98 points
Kraehe Shiraz, Barossa Valley 2016
The single-site 2016 Kraehe Marananga Shiraz, says Wine Front’s Mike Bennie… ‘Slips into the glass like midnight quicksilver…’
The Americans like it, too...
‘...plush and silky, with a never-ending finish and an extraordinary sense of grace and elegance.’ 98 points, Joe Czerwinski, Wine Advocate
‘...masterpiece… flamboyant, sexy style… awesome purity... magical wine…’ 98 points, Jeb Dunnuck
"It's been crucial for me to have Callum come in and give another perspective," said Powell senior.
Powell & Son’s labels are understated, making the single-site wines look more like hand-bottled samples than the definitive vineyard expressions they are. These wines, made in tiny quantities, are named after the growers - Steinert, Kraehe, Brennecke, Kleinig, Loechel - who originally established the vineyards the wines come from.
As Jeb Dunnuck says: ‘These brilliant wines are unquestionably at the same quality level as anything Powell has achieved in the past… given the early involvement of the next generation in Callum Powell, the future looks very bright at this address’.
Explore the Powell & Son range now.