Upstream in Winecurrent

Vintages Release: Date TBD

***1/2 cellar 
Château Vrai Caillou 2014
AOC Bordeaux Supérieur $15.95 (348292) 12.5% alcohol
This wine is dark plum, not quite opaque, in colour. The nose is reminiscent of cocoa powder with hints of red berries. It is medium-to-full bodied on the palate, with very strong tannins layered on top of hints of chocolate and spice. A well-priced wine for someone looking to start a cellar, this will keep for at least another 5 years after which it can be enjoyed with lamb and aged cheeses. (Dave Isaacs)

• If you’re in Ontario, order Glaetzer and Heartland wines online by the case for shipping to your home, office or restaurant from The Vine Agency.

• The following ‘Wallace’ red blend—78% Shiraz/22% Grenache was sourced from the sub-appellation of Ebenezer from 60-year-old Grenache bush vine fruit, fermented in stainless steel tank to preserve its juicy flavour. ‘Wallace’ is an ancestral name of Colin's wife, Judith, who hailed from Scotland. The Wallace symbol - a Celtic cross, thistle and Celtic knot speaks to her ancestry.

****1/2 drink or cellar 
Glaetzer Wines ‘Wallace’ Shiraz/Grenache 2015
Barossa Valley $25.00 $25.00 14.5% alcohol 
Lifted aromas of earthy notes mingle with piquant spice, black licorice and perfumed floral notes precede a tang-laden stream of palate-bathing flavour with bright red berry, mixed spice and wisps of dark bittersweet chocolate to the fore. It’s medium weight with good texture, persistent purity of fruit and sports a lengthy, lip-smacking aftertaste. Drinking well now, it pairs well with grilled rib-eye and Portobello mushrooms. (Vic Harradine)

• The following ‘Anaperenna’ red blend—76% Shiraz/24% Cabernet Sauvignon—was sourced from the northern tip of the Geographical Indication of Barossa Valley in the sub-region, ‘Ebenezer’, as are all Ben Glaetzer wines. Low-yielding fruit was matured 16 months in new 300L oak hogsheads, 92% French, balance American.

***** cellar 
Glaetzer Wines ‘Anaperenna’ 2015
Barossa Valley $60.00 15.0% alcohol 
Winemaker Ben Glaetzer leaves his experienced, confident fingerprints all over this. It showcases great depth, good balance, tang and complexity with good purity of fruit and firm underpinning, but not overworked or overblown. Involved aromas of baking spice, savory herbs, espresso roast and dark cherry/berry and plum fruit abound. A gusher of spice, ripe mulberry, black plum and black currant coat the palate infusing the lengthy, tang-laden, balanced finish and aftertaste. The ripe, fine-grained tannins are easily handled by opening 2020 to 2035 – an inspired choice for the cellar. (Vic Harradine)

• The following two wines refer to Amon-Ra, king of all gods in Egyptian mythology. The ‘all-seeing eye’ icon on the label represents six senses—touch, taste, hearing, sight, smell and thought. Winemaker Ben Glaetzer created this legacy red to appeal to them all. The fruit for the 2014 was sourced from 50 to 130-year-old, dry-grown Shiraz, aged 16 months in 100% new oak hogsheads, 95% French, 5% American, bottled unfiltered.

***** cellar 
Glaetzer Wines ‘Amon-Ra’ Shiraz 2014
Barossa Valley $85.00 (58032) 15.0% alcohol 
There’s a profusion of perfumed aromas—mixed spice, cedar and bright red fruit. A tapestry of juicy, ripe mulberry and black currant fruit engulf the palate interweaving with savory herbs, anise and wisps of sweet vanilla. It’s medium-plus weight with generous mouthfeel, good depth, complexity and persistent purity of fruit that’s framed with lip-smacking tang and underpinned by a firm tannin structure—all quite stunning and stylish. Kudos to winemaker extraordinaire, Ben Glaetzer, who passed his magic wand over this. Pop corks 2022 to 2040. (Vic Harradine)

• The following Glaetzer 2015 ‘Amon-Ra’ sourced fruit from a great vintage and 50 to 145 year-old vines from the Ebenezer sub-appellation of the northernmost tip of Barossa Valley. The Amon-Ra is listed in the über-prestigious Langton’s Classification of Australian Fine Wines.

****1/2 cellar 
Glaetzer Wines ‘Amon-Ra’ Shiraz 2015
Barossa Valley $85.00 (58032) 15.5% alcohol
The nose on this full-bodied, fully textured cellar dweller offers aromas of spice, floral and cedar with notes of bramble berry. It envelops the palate with a rich flow of briary berry, black, juicy Bing cherry interlaced with excellent tang, black licorice and cassis persisting through the long, balanced and beautiful, finish and aftertaste. There are strong signs this will be quite special, though tight and taut with firm, fine-grain tannin for now—open 2025 to 2037. (Vic Harradine)

• The following Heartland ‘Foreign Correspondent’ is a 51% Lagrein/49% Dolcetto red blend. Both Dolcetto vines and the less-common Lagrein are grown primarily in northern Italy with the first plantings of Lagrein in Australia in 1988.

**** drink now 
Heartland ‘Foreign Correspondent’ 2016
Langhorne Creek $26.00 12.0% alcohol
This opens with aromas of bright, red berry fruit along with wisps of spice and sprigs of savory herbs following through and replaying on the palate with spice-laced pie cherry and red currant framed by juicy tang. It’s crisp and refreshing with a racy finish. This unique Lagrein/Dolcetto red blend saw no oak, can be slightly chilled served and pours particularly well with charcouterie board or cheese platter. (Vic Harradine)

• The following 2013 ‘Director’s Cut’ was sourced from some of the best vineyards in Langhorne Creek of +40-year-old, premium Shiraz fruit picked in the cool of the night then crushed to small, open-top stainless steel fermenters. After eight days of cool fermentation on skins, all wine was transferred to new 80% French/20% American, 300L oak hogsheads for 14 months ageing.

****1/2 drink or cellar 
Heartland ‘Director’s Cut’ Shiraz 2013
Langhorne Creek $39.95 14.5% alcohol
Surprisingly approachable for such a powerful red, this delivers the proverbial iron fist in a velvet glove—it’s full flavoured, full bodied and fully textured. Aromas of grilled herbs, sweet vanilla and gamy notes leap from the glass. A gusher of fruit, tannin and tang coat the palate with gusto—bramble berry, cassis and black plum mingling with spice, dark bittersweet chocolate and considerable élan. Best to open 2018 to 2023, you could also aerate/decant for three hours before pouring now. (Vic Harradine)

**** drink or cellar 
Heartland Shiraz 2014
Langhorne Creek $19.95 (661934) 14.5% alcohol
This medium-plus bodied, nicely textured Shiraz is fruit-forward with complexity, structure and oodles of charm. Aromas of bramble berry, peppery spice and black licorice set the table for a smorgasbord of palate flavours with red and black currant and black raspberry fruit joined by piquant spice, earthy bits and a delectable line of juicy tang to the fore. There’s fine-grained tannin and good acidity decorating the long juicy finish and aftertaste. Good to go now and pours well with grilled steak, burgers or gourmet sausage. (Vic Harradine)

• Order Henschke wines by the case for delivery in Ontario to your home, office or restaurant online from B & W Wines.

• This is the 25th vintage for the following ‘Julius’ Riesling—a wine named in honour of Julius Henschke, a highly acclaimed artist and sculptor. Fruit was sourced from Eden Valley with the 2016 vintage classified as ‘exceptional’ and the Henschkes estimating a drinking window for this wine up to 2041.

***** cellar Exceptional Value! 
Henschke ‘Julius’ Riesling 2016
Eden Valley $39.00 11.5% alcohol
This is bright, pale-yellow with hints of green. Aromas of floral notes, minerality and lemon zest abound. An elegantly structured, medium-weight mouthful of lime, lemon curd, mineral salinity and pit fruit streak across the palate with great élan infusing the taut, lengthy, lip-smacking finish. Fruit was sourced from the absolute best of their Eden Valley Riesling. The aftertaste layers on piquant spice and green apple tang. Careful cellaring 2030 to 2035 will be rewarded. (Vic Harradine)

****1/2 drink or cellar 
Henschke ‘Croft’ Chardonnay 2015
Adelaide Hills $46.00 13.5% alcohol
This dishes up a creamy-smooth mouthful of baked apple, cloves, cinnamon and nutty notes from nine months ageing in French barrique, 24% new, now fairly-well integrated. Fruit for this wine was sourced from bio-dynamically farmed Lenswood vineyard. It’s medium-plus bodied with excellent texture, and a solid line of mouth-watering tang from twist top to last drop. It finishes clean, crisp and refreshing with a lengthy, tangy finish laced with lemon curd, green apple and ripe pear. (Vic Harradine)

• Fruit for the following Henschke ‘Giles’ Pinot Noir was biodynamically farmed, undergoing a 21- to 30-day ferment and cold soak, followed by 10 months maturation in French barrique, 31% new.

***** drink or cellar 
Henschke ‘Giles’ Pinot Noir 2014
Adelaide Hills $50.00 13.0% alcohol
Perfumed rose petals, piquant spice and a profusion of cherry/berry aromas leap from the glass. This showcases oodles of tangy acidity, persistent purity of ripe fruit flavour and a balanced, lingering finish and aftertaste. It bathes the palate with a medium-weight, nicely textured stream of juicy ripe fruit—red currant, black raspberry and black Bing cherry—nicely balanced by a surge of lip-smacking tang decorated with savoury herbs and piquant spice all persisting through the lingering finish. (Vic Harradine)

• The following ‘Henry’s Seven’ red blend—65% Shiraz/20% Grenache/10% Mataro/5% Viognier—was sourced from the Barossa Valley and Eden Valley hence the ‘Barossa’ Geographical Indication (GI) on bottle.

****1/2 drink or cellar 
Henschke ‘Henry’s Seven’ 2015
Barossa $49.95 (198621) 14.5% alcohol
This crowd-pleasing Shiraz is as close as you’ll get to a drink-me-now red from Henschke—and it still showcases complexity, deft balance, purity of fruit and lengthy, dry finish. A lifted, aromatic nose of black pepper notes and savory herbs introduce a tang-laden river of palate-bathing, red and black currant and black plum adorned with fennel and mixed spice. It’s medium-full bodied with good mouthfeel and it’s absolutely delicious. (Vic Harradine)

• The following ‘Keyneton Euphonium’ red blend was sourced from Eden Valley and Barossa Valley fruit—45% Shiraz/36% Cabernet Sauvignon/17% Merlot/2% Cabernet Franc. It was aged in 15% new and 85% seasoned—85% French and 15% American—300L oak hogsheads for 18 months then blended and bottled.

***** drink or cellar 
Henschke ‘Keyneton Euphonium’ 2013
Barossa $75.00 14.0% alcohol
Lively aromas of poultry seasoning and baking spice mingle with lively field berry fruit on the nose of this balanced and beautiful red blend. It surges over the palate with a medium-full bodied, generously textured flow of spice and tang-laden boysenberry, black plum and ripe mulberry interweaving with dark bittersweet chocolate and piquant spice all persisting through the monumentally long finish and aftertaste. There’s a long life ahead for this structured gem, though you could pop corks now, after a three- or four-hour aeration/decant, better 2020 to 2035. (Vic Harradine)

• The following Mount Edelstone was sourced from 102-year-old, dry-grown, ungrafted, centenarian Shiraz vines from the Eden Valley. It was first bottled as a single-vineyard wine in 1952 becoming recognised as one of Australia’s greatest Shiraz—it’s now farmed biodynamically.

***** cellar 
Henschke ‘Mount Edelstone’ 2014
Eden Valley $218.00 (718601) 14.5% alcohol
Heavily perfumed floral and sharp black pepper aromas leap from this stunning Shiraz. A profusion of ripe, luscious fruit—red and black currants, black plum and hints of blueberry—interlaced with sprigs of savory herbs and excellent tang. This is full fruited, full bodied and full of charm and elegance. There’s persistent purity of fruit, firm structure, deft balance and a long, long finish and aftertaste. Carefully cellar 2023 to 2037. (Vic Harradine)

• The following ‘Hill of Grace’ Shiraz was sourced from 100% pre-phylloxera material brought from Europe by settlers in the mid-1800s and grown on the single-vineyard, ‘Hill of Grace’ in the ‘High Eden’ at approximately 430m. The now biodynamically farmed vineyard is located opposite a beautiful Lutheran church named after a region in Silesia called ‘Gnadenberg’, meaning Hill of Grace. This wine was aged 18 months in 65% new, 35% seasoned—95% French and 5% American—300L hogsheads.

***** drink or cellar 
Henschke ‘Hill of Grace’ 2010
Eden Valley $1023.00 (399675) 14.5% alcohol
An involved nose of cedar, black pepper, savory herbs and dark cherry/berry fruit provide segue for a complex, full-bodied, well-textured Shiraz. A gusher of tangy red fruit—red currant and pie cherry—intertwined with rich, luscious ripe fruit flavour—mulberry and black plum—along with firm structure and excellent balance, reverberates on the palate throughout. It’s stylish and succulent, requiring time to mature—cellar carefully 2025 to 2037. (Vic Harradine)