Shiraz may be the archetype of the Barossa, but there are those expressions that transcend the usual heavy-weights by virtue of the experience of those behind them. Such is the case with Bruno & George. Here, deep local knowledge and vast international experience applied to both viticulture and winemaking, comes up trumps. The result is a more transparent wine, mid-weighted of feel and flecked with scents of lilac, salumi, clove, iodine and ample blue fruits. A smooth operator in the mouth, with a long glide to the finish, chaperoned by polished tannins and a peppery lilt. The choice of used, rather than new wood, appropriate.
Colonel 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.