HEAD Old Vine Shiraz, Barossa Valley
The hand-picked fruit comes in small parcels from up to 100-years-old vines. There’s a little whole-bunch fermentation prior to 12 months in a mix of old and new barrels. There is a measure of Old Vine Grenache to lighten up the classic Barrosa Valley Shiraz richness.
Explosive blue and black fruit, a little vanilla, baking spices, sage and flowers. Medium bodied, smooth and juicy in fruit, but deep, playful almost, with rich silky tannin, and impressive length. The 2018 vintage looks to be a very good one for Head.
95 points, The Wine Front (April 2019)
This has a fascinatingly fresh and vibrant feel with such effortless depth -- the stuff of great, old vines. Raspberry and blackberry aromas abound with ripe and rich plums and dark cherries in play. The sheets of fine and fresh tannin are exceptional.
95 points, JamesSuckling.com (June 2019)
Barossa ValleyColonel William Light, the South Australian colony’s Surveyor-General, named the Barossa in 1837 after the site of an English victory over the French in the Spanish Peninsular War. In the mid-1800’s Silesian and English immigrants settled in the area. The Barossa itself comprises two distinct sub-regions: Eden Valley and the warmer Barossa Valley floor at 270m.The Barossa Valley enjoys a warm Mediterranean climate characterised by hot dry summers and relatively low rainfall. Cool sea breezes from the Gulf of St Vincent modify the temperature, however hot northerly winds can occasionally dominate creating considerable vine stress. Many older established vineyards are dry-grown, but supplementary irrigation is also extensively used. The valley is comprised of rich brown soils and alluvial sands. A long history of uninterrupted viticulture in the area means the Barossa valley is home to Australia’s largest concentration of old-vine Shiraz, Grenache and Mourvedre with many over 100 years old. Although most famous for Shiraz, the Barossa can also produce fragrant and deliciously fruity Grenache blends and beautifully rich, chocolatey Cabernet Sauvignons.
Alex Head is part of the new generation of small Barossa winemakers creating wines in a new, more elegant style. Inspired by the wines of the Rhone valley, Alex Head sources small-parcels of old vine fruit and uses traditional vinification techniques to produce wines with perfume, vibrant fruit and savoury complexity. Head’s aim is maximum drinkability, which he successfully achieves by emphasising freshness, balance, texture and fruit purity. Eight wines are made under the Head label, including the Blonde and the Brunette inspired by the legendary wines of the Northern Rhone.