Awards & Reviews
2021 Wine Companion
97 Points | Single Vineyard Hampel Shiraz | 2018
From 17+ year old vines, most of the vinification following Gobell, this with 50% new oak and 20 months maturation. This has a vibrant palate, the black and red fruits with a juicy quality that sees them penetrate every corner of the mouth.
97 Points | Single Vineyard Gobell Shiraz | 2018
From 35-70 year old vines in Marananga, destemmed, open-fermented with two cultured yeasts, 10 days on skins, 21 months in new French hogsheads, 120 dozen made. An unqualified triumph for the '18 vintage, the wine of grace, purity and balance. Yes, the new oak can be seen, but as the years pass it will slowly slide away.
97 Points | Single Vineyard Hoffman Shiraz | 2018
From 100 year old vines, which it is surely the reason for the fuller dark fruit profile. Matured for 21 months in French hogsheads, two new, one used.
97 Points | Single Vineyard Limb Shiraz | 2018
25 year old vines in Seppeltsfield, destemmed, open-fermented, 7 days on skins, matured for 21 months in French hogsheads (50% new). This ever so classy cabernet defies belief - the warm vintage, the alcohol and the Seppeltsfield district should have conspired to make this an impossible dream. It's positively juicy and elegant, with cassis/blackcurrant, bay leaf and sprightly tannins.
96 Points | Eden Valley Riesling | 2019
A wine that takes no prisoners at any stage along the way from the bouquet to the unrelenting power of the back-palate, finish and aftertaste. Citrus of all kinds, and apples, led by Granny Smith, meet the depth of the acidity, and stare it down with ease. Great now, great later.
95 Points | Slow Grown Shiraz | 2018
From vines 35-70 years old. ‘Slow Grown' doesn't refer to any bonsai or similar technique, just the relationship between the growers, their vines and this wine. Matured for 19 months in American and French hogsheads (30% new), it has the same liveliness as its more complex (and expensive) siblings, oak choice and handling one particular difference.
95 Points | El Mejor Cabernet Mataro Shiraz | 2018
A quixotic blend of 70% cabernet sauvignon and 15% each of mourvedre and shiraz. Open-fermented, 7-10 days on skins, basket-pressed, matured for 21 months in one each of French and American hogsheads, both new. Positively vibrates with the intensity of its ever-changing black, purple and red berry fruits, the tannins fine, the balance impeccable.
95 Points | Cellar Dweller Cabernet Shiraz | 2018
From the Eden Valley, Barossa Valley central floor, Seppeltsfield and Williamstown, matured for 19 months in French hogsheads (15% new). Once again, Soul Growers has got the picking spot on. This is cabernet to its boots in a warm vintage when so many others let the alcohol rise to 15% or more. Earthy tannins and a firm profile to the blackcurrant fruit provide exemplary varietal fruit
2020 Wine Companion
97 Points | Single Vineyard Kroehn Shiraz | 2017
From 18+ vines within the township of Eden Valley, one of the few Soul Growers wines with 100% new oak (French, coopered in Australia by AP John). Slightly lighter, but healthy colour; this is a juicy red and black-fruited wine with superb balance and length tending more to medium-bodied than full-bodied.
97 Points | Single Vineyard Gobell Shiraz | 2017
The Soul Growers flagship wines come in small parcels of 100 dozen bottels, the vinification nearly identical, the price ($150) identical. Whole berry fermentation at 22-25 degrees C with specific cultured yeast, 10 days on skins, 21 months in French oak (50% new). It is full-bodied and intense, but the wine flows easily along the palate with notes of red cherry and plum lurking in the depths below black fruits.
96 Points | Single Vineyard Hampel Shiraz | 2017
From vines in the Kalimna district, matured in 100% French hogsheads (50% new). the Hampel family has been farming in the Barossa Valley for six generations. This complex wine is full-bodied, capturing red, purple and black fruits, with a gently savoury, but decidedly long finish.
96 Points | Single Vineyard Hoffmann Shiraz | 2017
This is from ancestor vines planted 1883-1913 in the Ebenezer district, matured in three French hogsheads (two new). Particularly rich and complex, with notes of Cherry Ripe, coupled with fine, moutherwatering tannins.
95 Points | Single Vineyard Limb Cabernet Sauvignon | 2017
From a site at Seppeltsfield planted in '80. Destemmed but open fermented with whole berries. 21 months in French hogsheads, 50% new. Quite elegant in style, perhaps the vintage at play. Perfumed varietal aromas and a hint of anise/licorice mesh well with very seductive oak, the palate long and slinky with tart rather than dry tannin. Should age gracefully.