PIRATHON SHIRAZ GOLD 2016
Pirathon is an ancient word for pinnacle. Shiraz is widely regarded as the pinnacle grape of
the Barossa and the north-western Barossa is the pinnacle sub-appellation for
Palate: Rich and full-bodied. Very generous, powerful. Totally mouth-coating. Bright
fruit flavours, liquorice. Firm chalky tannins giving longevity as well as nice grip to
counter-balance sleek fruits, but importantly polished. Harmonious acid. Very classy,
savoury oak, highly integrated. A long lingering finish.
Appearance: Dark magenta-black in colour
Aroma: Very intense aromatics. Dark black fruits, plus dried fig. Sweet spice, almost
incense-like. Classy cedary oak.
Barossa, South Australia
The grapes were harvested from the low-yielding vineyards of traditional family
growers in the north-western Barossa districts of Moppa & Belvidere. Each vineyard
adds its own exclusive dimension to Pirathon Shiraz and combined they produce the
The grapes for the 2016 Pirathon Gold were from De Fazio and Hillview vineyards.
Vintage 2016 was hot and dry resulting in grapes ripening earlier than average.
Winter and Spring rainfall was down by 38% whilst growing season temperatures
were up by 3 degrees. Some welcome rain came at the end of January refreshing the
vines and giving them good moisture to ripen to maturity.
Yields from 2016 are solid and importantly quality is stunning. 2016 is certainly a star
vintage with bright intense wines of great flavour intensity and inherent balance.
Each vineyard was harvested at optimum maturity across a two month period from
February 12th to April 6th. Following harvest, each individual lot of grapes was
crushed into a separate open top fermenter. During fermentation, hand pump-overs
gently extracted colour and flavour from the grapes. After 7-10 days on skins the
fermented grapes were pressed with a traditional press. The wines were then filled to
new and seasoned French oak hogsheads for maturation for 24 months before each
lot of wine was racked from the barrel and carefully blended. The wine was bottled
without fining, ensuring the true expression of the vineyards in the bottle.
Reviews and Awards
“A stunning rendition of the variety; the complex
and engaging bouquet shows dark fruit richness
combined with warm spice, smoked game, roasted
nut and expresso aromas. The brooding and
sumptuous palate offers multi-layered mouthfeel
and velvety texture, finishing magnificently long
Sam Kim, Wine Orbit, March 2021
Excellent to outstanding
“Perfumed nose, ripe dark fruits with hints of smoke and euacalypt.
Mixed red and dark berryfruits flood the palate, that eucalypt note
coursing through its veins, adding savoury licorice notes. While fruit
sweet, this remains dry, the powerful fruit neatly balanced by fine
tannins that build as the wine opens up. Supple, generous and a
delight to drink.”
Mark Henderson, Otago Daily Times, March 2019
New Zealand International Wine Show, 2019
Matured in French oak, 67% new. It’s an incredibly smoky and an
incredibly tannic wine with tar, salted caramel, licorice, coconut and
spearmint flavours gushing through. The smokiness of this wine
can’t be emphasised enough; it makes for a distinctive profile. This
wine’s huge arms of tannin and big body of baked fruit will see it live
and mature for a whopping long time
Halliday Wine Companion, Feb 2020
Dense and dark in the glass, it actually feels heavy to swirl. No
shortage of powerful aromas.: Wood, concentrated plum, chocolate,
baking spices, thick vanilla bean paste and just fired shotgun
cartridge. The palate equally as dense as the colour. Concetrated,
syrupy with smoked meats, bittersweet chocolate and blood plum.
It’s viscous with large swathes of coffee ground pervasive tannins.
The flavour lasts long with a smoky trail. One for the hedonists.
Regan Drew, Vino Notebook, June 2020
“Big, bold and fruity bouquet, dense, rich, peppery and spicy - a no
holds barred package. The palate is equally rich and bold with a
smoky cigar box and black fruits palate, medium tannins and
balanced acid line. Overall quite complex and lengthy with a long
persistent finish. Drink now and through 2026.”
Cameron Douglas, New Zealand’s Master Sommelier
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