This is a smaller release for the Eisenstone label, with the drought and some rework happening on the Greenock Vineyard limiting quantities. As a result, only three wines were released – Ebenezer, the Hoffmann Vineyard (previously Dimchurch) and the Roennfeldt Vineyard.
Just like last year, they’re wonderfully lavish, expressive, full-tilt Barossan reds. Winemaking remains similar too, although the oak did seem more noticeable this vintage – a product of a riper year perhaps, given that most spent less time in barrel?
Importantly, these wines are also terroir pieces, built to highlight the different parishes of the Barossa, and with distinct differences despite the production remaining the same.
On that point, a note to say that I’m using the unofficial Barossa Valley ‘parishes’, based around the old churches, rather than sub-regions. The Barossa is a zone and has two regions within it – the Barossa Valley & the Eden Valley. The Eden Valley has a gazetted sub-region (High Eden), but that’s where the official stuff ends. There was an attempt at making sub regions a few years ago and it became wildly complex very very quickly.
For anyone who can appreciate the mouthfilling bold flavours of big Barossan reds, these Eisenstone Shiraz releases are unquestionably impressive wines (and available direct from Eisenstone or the distributor Single Vineyard Sellers).
Eisenstone Hoffmann Vineyard Ebenezer SV902 Shiraz 2019
Ahh, there it is. I opened the Ebenezer Shiraz first and thought it was a bit mono-dimensional, but this is flash and much more complex. Sourced from the Hoffmann family’s 70yo vineyard, the fruit spends 18 months in 50% new French oak. Dark, layered, oak and fruit-rich, it’s wonderfully lavish Barossan red with all the trimmings. Never too oaky, never too much fruit, it’s hedonistic in a ‘right’ way that contemporaries like Dan Standish do so well. The fruit is all in the purple end of the spectrum – boysenberry, blueberry and plum. It’s concentrated, a bit warm, comprehensively mouthfilling and decadent – really drags through your body does this. I think I like it more than the SV902 than last year, as it’s a bit more flash. Best drinking: now and for at least fifteen years. 18.7/20, 95/100. 14.5%, $100. Would I buy it? this is my pick of the range, yes.
Eisenstone Ebenezer SR802 Shiraz 2019
There really isn’t much in it between this and the top dog Hoffmann Vineyard – it seems to largely be about the best fruit (and best barrels) going into the SV902. This is just a bit simpler, albeit sexy as well. Barossan Shiraz at its rich and choc berried best. Oak is a big player here – it’s like a Kit Kat with a choc wafer flavour. Utterly seductive though. Maybe not the extra layer of hedonism – more of a rounded thing rather than sophisticated – but it’s mighty seductive (and I’m nitpicking). High quality. Best drinking: now and for at least fifteen years. 18.5/20, 94/100. 14.5%, $75. Would I buy it? This is my third favourite, but again not much in it.
Eisenstone Roennfeldt Vineyard SV904 Marananga Shiraz 2019
Another from the top tier single vineyard range of Eisenstone Shiraz, with identical winemaking for this fruit sourced from the western Barossa. Again, it’s a lovely plush thing too – lifted purple fruit aromatics, lovely purple fruit on the polished palate, with a medium bodied profile despite the alcohol. Fresh and maybe a little more tart this vintage, but another high-quality Shiraz. Maybe not the fireworks of the more chunky ‘18s but glossy, polished and seductive. Best drinking: now and for at least fifteen years. 18.5/20, 94/100. 14.5%, $100. Would I buy it? My second favourite.