Dalfarras is a sub-brand of Tahbilk, a producer that I am a bid supporter of having tasted numerous wines here on Let’s Taste, and having interviewed CEO Alister Purbrick on The Vincast wine podcast. I was intrigued with these wines as they are made from Italian varieties. Let me know what you think in the comments below!
You may have heard my recent interview of Alister Purbrick, CEO and owner of Tahbilk Winery, on Episode 069 of The Vincast podcast. It was preceded by an incredible vertical tasting of the 1860 Vines Shiraz and a lunch at Vue de Monde. If you didn’t I highly recommend heading to intrepidwino.com to hear the interview and check out my tasting notes on the wines.
The wonderful team at Fireworks PR sent me bottles of the Tahbilk new releases, and I decided to open them and share my impressions. Have you had a chance to taste them yet? What were your impressions?
Tahbilk Marsanne 2015 and Tahbilk Eric Stevens Purbrick Shiraz & Cabernet Sauvignon 2010
Alister Purbrick, almost on a whim, became the first qualified winemaker at Tahbilk, graduating from Roseworthy College. At 24 he took over at the family winery, not only as winemaker but also as CEO, working closely with his grandfather. He completely revitalised systems in the vineyards and the cellars, and whilst improving the white wine production, retained the iconic style of red wine production. He joined me on this episode of The Vincast after a back-vintage tasting of the 1860 Vines Shiraz, starting with the first one released in 1979, one of his greatest legacies (read my tasting notes here).
When you start learning about wine in Australia, particularly Victorian wine, one of the first names you learn about is Tahbilk. There are a number of reasons why this is the case. The first is that it is one of the oldest in the country, and boasts some of the oldest shiraz vines to boot, not easy to do in the phylloxera-affected state of Victoria compared to South Australia. The second is that they make an iconic (and hugely under-appreciated) white wine ideal for ageing, in their Marsanne, particularly the 1927 vine wine. Thus Tahbilk has a soft spot for many wine industry professionals like myself.
So it was with great pleasure that I got invited as a “new-media” guest to the release of the 2010 vintage of the 1860 Vines Shiraz, celebrating its 150th birthday this year, with a number of very special people to taste through almost every vintage since its first release. It was thanks in part to former guest on The Vincast podcast Kathy Lane that I managed to get an invite, as her business Fireworks PR did an amazing job helping Tahbilk put it together at Vue de Monde.
Finding original-rooted pre-20th Century vines in Victoria is not easy, which adds to the lustre of this iconic wine. What helps these vines is the very sandy soils they are planted on, which the phylloxera aphid can’t live in. When current owner and CEO Alister Purbrick took over the business from his father, it was his decision to bottle a wine exclusively from these old vines. At the time Australia was only just coming out of its fortified wine-dominant production, as markets started to discover the quality of Australian dry red wine, particularly made from shiraz.
Below you will find my impressions of each of the vintages that were on offer. I strongly urge people to get their hands on some of the 2010 vintage as it is a belter, and as seen in this tasting the wines have immense ageing potential. I also urge people to subscribe to The Vincast podcast, as after the tasting I recorded an episode with Alister which was an amazing insight into how far the wine industry has come in the past 40+ years.
The Vincast - a Wine Podcast with The Intrepid Wino
Wine - Wine People - Wine Culture
A podcast about wine, wine culture and wine people. Every week a different guest from the wine industry joins host The Intrepid Wino (aka James Scarcebrook) for a casual chat about the world of wine.
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