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2012 Taylors The Pioneer Clare Valley Shiraz

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Winemaker's Notes

Vintage: Growing conditions leading up to vintage 2013 were benign, apart from a frost event in mid-October impacting several estate blocks. It was a dry growing season with few rainfall events. Early December saw 30mm rain which was a season changer. Without this the overall yields would've been very low. Harvest conditions were excellent starting early February. Our winemakers reported outstanding quality across all varieties, with excellent acid balance & flavour development.

Winemaking: Fruit was harvested for optimal flavour & tannin development in March 2013. Each parcel was de-stemmed, quickly chilled to 4°C in the must lines & left to cold soak in fermentation vessels for 4 days. For primary fermentation, the fruit was transferred to new headless American oak barrels and fermented at 22°C to 28°C over 7-10 days using RX60 yeast to add complexity & retain aromatics. The fermenting must was hand plunged twice daily to aid colour & tannin extraction. After a period of extended skin contact the wines were pressed, racked off gross lees and transferred back to the same barrels for secondary malolactic fermentation. Post MLF, the wine was matured in a selection of AP John & Vicard fine-grained American oak barrels. 40% in new oak & the balance in 1, 2 & 3 year old barrels. A barrel selection assessment took place after a year to identify parcels deemed 'exceptional' to return to barrel for 8 months maturation prior to bottling in June 2016.

Colour: A deep crimson red with vibrant purple hue.

Nose: Fragrant spice, dark cherry, plum, dark chocolate, freshly roasted coffee beans, charred oak.

Palate: A commanding wine with multiple layers of intense, lush dark berry fruit followed by spicy fruitcake & seductive mocha. The palate is full and generous but with precision to the structure and an appealing texture with velvety, mouthcoating tannins mingling harmoniously with fruit & spice. Elegant acids and light, long tannins carry the palate to a persistently rewarding finish.

Cellaring: Up to 20 years from vintage.

expert reviews about

2012 Taylors The Pioneer Clare Valley Shiraz

Expert Reviews

James Halliday (2012 Vintage) says
This is a well made, civilised medium-bodied shiraz, every part of what is in the wine neatly balanced and integrated, starting with the colour and finishing with the tannins (and everything in between). You are left to wonder how the price was arrived at.
Huon Hooke (2012 Vintage) says
Deep, rich red colour with the faintest tint of purple. Decadent oak-fruit combination of aromas suggests dark chocolate, vanilla, fruitcake and charred-oak, the latter not as obvious as in the St Andrews shiraz. In the mouth, it's decadently rich and lush, opulent and endowed with smooth, velvety texture. The tannins are ripe and supple, smooth and harmonious. An unbashedly oak-driven, big, super-ripe Aussie red. A superb example of its type. (Inaugural release. A tribute to family patriarch Bill Taylor)

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