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Rockford Basket Press Shiraz 1995

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    Discover the essence of Barossa Valley's heart in Tanunda at Rockford, where a legacy of tantalizing taste experiences has been crafted since the 1980s. During those times, the land was more accessible, offering an inviting opportunity for aspiring winemakers to thrive. Robert O'Callaghan, the visionary founder and proprietor, seized the moment and acquired the property that is now home to Rockford. Building strong connections with local grape growers and acquiring top-notch winemaking equipment, Robert embarked on his remarkable winemaking odyssey at Rockford, paving the way for unforgettable wine journeys.

    Since its inception, Rockford has embraced a small-scale approach, nurturing close relationships with growers and forging genuine connections with customers. This steadfast commitment to personal connections sets Rockford apart, a competitive edge that stems from decades of fostering rapport within the local community. The land upon which Rockford stands boasts a rich history, its buildings and equipment carefully preserved throughout the years, exuding an enchanting antique charm. During the exploration of the premises, the captivating aroma of wine production permeates the air, immersing individuals in a sensory experience that harmoniously blends with the site's distinctive ambiance. Amidst the allure of Rockford's surroundings, the wines themselves take centre stage. Crafted with passion and meticulous attention to detail, they encapsulate the essence of Barossa Valley's terroir. Each sip unveils a delightful flavor profile, a testament to Rockford's dedication to producing wines that captivate the palate and evoke a genuine sense of pleasure.

    Robert O’Callaghan’s evocative Rockford Basket Press Shiraz is made from grapes sourced from 60 to 140-year-old dry-grown vineyards (most from independent growers) across a range of Barossa soils, altitudes, and micro-climates, the wine represents a rare and important post-colonial Australian aesthetic. This embodiment of the region's rich history and diverse terroir ensures that each bottle of Rockford Basket Press Shiraz carries the legacy of the Barossa, creating an extraordinary sensory experience that speaks to the heritage and artistry of winemaking.

    The beauty of the wine truly lies in its unique wine making techniques. Embracing a tradition that sets it apart, every step is meticulously crafted to capture the essence of its origin. The journey begins with hand-picked fruit, carefully selected for its optimal ripeness and quality. Following this, classic Barossa techniques come into play, including the utilization of a 19th-century wooden Bagshaw crusher, open fermentation, and the time-honoured method of basket pressing. As the wine matures, it is nurtured in seasoned 300-litre French and American oak hogsheads, along with 2500-litre vats, allowing it to develop and evolve over a period of two years. This patient process ensures that the wine attains a remarkable balance, as the oak imparts its subtle influence, enhancing the complexity and depth of flavors.

    The result is a wine that embodies the rich heritage and craftsmanship of its winemaking techniques. Each sip unveils a symphony of flavors, showcasing the meticulous attention to detail and dedication that goes into creating a truly exceptional wine. Discover the beauty that lies within, as this wine tells a story of tradition, craftsmanship, and the artistry of winemaking.

    Rockford Basket Press Shiraz 1995 exhibits explosive fruit flavors, with perfectly integrated tannins and a well-balanced alcohol content. The colour remains vibrant, with only subtle hints of an orange tint. On the nose, there are suggestions of raisin, accompanied by notes of chocolate and juniper. On the palate, more ripe berry fruit unfolds, framed by plush and robust tannins. The wine is intense yet expansive. It is an exceptional wine that can likely age for another 3-5 years, but it is already delicious at present.  Everything remains controlled and balanced. The presence of oak is noticeable, but it contributes to a greater whole that transcends its individual parts. Although it is nearing the end of its lifespan, it retains a remarkable depth and complexity, yet remains approachable and enduring on the palate. The tannins are understated but provide structural support to the wine. It is incredibly drinkable and indulgent. 

    Green tobacco. Sweet earth. Tinges of leather. And a palate that’s grainy, lean and unsustained, but has a surprisingly hearty push of perfumed aniseed and tar begging to be noticed. A very good result for the vintage. - Campbell Mattinson, The Wine Front 

    Sweetly fragrant, but slightly hollow, this is a more delicate Basket Press, whose perfume of raspberries and plums precedes a generous, if slightly flat palate, with sweet fruit and a supple mouthfeel. It's rich enough, but lacks the tannin structure and complexity of the better years. Drink 2003-2007. - Jeremy Oliver, 90 points 

    Not considered a top-notch vintage but still very impressive, this is a youthful, unevolved wine that seemed every bit as backward as the 1996 and even more youthful than the 1997. Deep purple with sweet creme de cassis notes intermixed with underbrush, creosote, and pepper, very rich, vigorous, full-bodied, and moderately tannic, this is still a baby. Anticipated maturity: 2003-2020. - Robert Parker, 93 points 

    The tip of the age apex, not quite developing the earthy characters of the '88 and not quite as concentrated as the '94. The fruit here is relaxed and while still deep the wine is layered rather than the brick wall of a younger buck. Perfect with beef. - Wine House & Guests, 2007  

    The Finer Details
    Style - Red Wine
    Varietal - Shiraz
    Country - Australia
    Region - Barossa Valley, South Australia
    Vintage - 1995
    Bottle Size - 750ml
    ABV - 14%
    Closure - Cork