Latest Happenings

Vintage 2008: By now most people would have read the many and varied reports on the just past 2008 vintage, and I thought I would take this chance to give you my perspective on the Barossa Valley vintage. If a single word were to be used it would be HOT! however, this would probably not be a strong enough descriptor, perhaps Bloody HOT is more suitable. Then throw in frustrating, quick, one of a kind, well you get the picture.

The very best news is that I believe the Shiraz fruit that I have taken in this vintage is a good as I have ever seen, the Grenache and Mataro are extremely solid, and the Petite Verdot & Malbec handled the heat a treat.

I was also very fortunate to gain the winemaking services of Nigel Dolan ex Saltram No 1, Eighth Maker, Mamre Brook etc, for this vintage as a consultant and his experience in a tough year was invaluable.

Bottling of the 2006 wines has commenced and I look forward to promoting these wines to you in 12 months time.

New Releases:

My thanks go to Ric Einstein of Torbwine fame for the following reviews that he created on his latest pilgrimage to SA. Ric seeks no gratuity for these comments and I have found him to be a fair man who will always give an honest opinion on the wines. The full details of his visit are available at Torbwine.com

Kurtz Family 2005 Boundary Row Shiraz; Bouquet shows a great expression of bright Shiraz fruit with plum, sweet vanilla, floral notes, and spice. Silky, dusty tannins combine with pure fruit to form an ample-weight wine with a supple consistency, and an agreeable complexity. Blackberry, violets, plum and chocolate flavours, together with loads of dried herbs, finish slightly sour but with good length. It’s approachable now, but will probably reach its peak drinking window around 2012. Rated as Recommended with **** for value.

Kurtz Family 2005 GSM; 60% 25% 15% the wine is sealed under cork. The bouquet shows sweet blackberry notes with vanilla and charcuterie below, and with hints of milk chocolate, it’s attractive. A well-made, clean, solidly balanced wine that is driven by pure fruit, and backed by silky, chalky tannins, it’s medium-weight with a supple consistency, and has a diverse, harmonious complexity. This is a cuddly wine that is easy-drinking, will go well with food, and shows some restraint. Flavours of blackberry, black cherry, plum, dark chocolate and mint have a meaty, spicy finish. Rated as Recommended with ***** for value, you would be crazy to miss it.

Kurtz Family 2005 Seven Sleepers; The bouquet is fruit driven, showing diverse aromatics with varietal Cabernet notes, plums, vanilla and chocolate. On the palate, the bright fruit is shouting for attention, with cocoa, plum, blackcurrant, vanilla and chocolate flavours that finish clean. With enough dusty tannin to hold the wine together, there may not be a lot on the back palate, but it has loads of flavour to compensate. Medium-weight with a supple consistency and short structure, this is a very-easy drinking wine with tons of fruit for the dollar. Drink over the next three years; it is rated as Acceptable with ***** for value. At this price point, quaffing wines don’t come any better! Previous Vintage Wine: Limited stock is available.

Kurtz Family 2003 Lunar Block Shiraz; The bouquet shows cloves, blackberry and coffee, so there is a fair amount of oak influence, but less than in previous years. Fine, powdery and drying tannins combine with fresh, lively acid and pure fruit to produce an ample-weight, well balanced wine with supple consistency, solid structure and agreeable complexity. Clove, plum, black cherry, a minor amount of dried herbs, and slightly green tannins, (which are no doubt a product of the vintage); the wine finishes with good length and is a good result from a difficult vintage.

Further Reviews:

Winorama- Gary Walsh

2005 Boundary Row Shiraz Sunday 27th April 2008

Barossa Shiraz is probably best not known for providing weekday bargain drinking but here’s a winery that’s been delivering the goods year after year at very modest prices. I have tasted every release of the ‘Boundary Row’ Shiraz since the 2001 vintage and this could well be the finest. They are currently looking for distribution in NSW if any readers have a hole in their portfolio they would like to fill. It smells of black and blue fruit, coal, dried mint, pepper and a bit of chocolate. On the palate medium to full bodied with an attractive mix of sweet fruit and more savoury Barossan flavours. It has fine dry tannins, a fresh balanced mouthfeel and provides a great deal of juicy drinking satisfaction. Tails off a little on the back palate but you’ll only notice if you are feeling either over analytical or a little churlish, otherwise you’d be too busy drinking and enjoying yourself. Rated 90 Points

2005 Boundary Row GSM Friday 23rd May 2008

I’ve been chuffing through a fair bit of Grenache (and blends) over the last few days and this would have to be king of the playground when it comes to balancing value and quality – like two fat kids battling it out on a see-saw with Tubby Quality just losing out to Portly Value by the slimmest of margarines. It’s big and dark with blueberry, dried cherry, spice, chocolate and dried herb flavours and perhaps a little menthol lift. Full bodied with soft tannin and a little warmth, it’s sweetly fruited but also appropriately dry and savoury. Chunky and a bit blocky but so spicy and drinkable that you shouldn’t notice. Good long finish too. Massively over-delivers. Rated 90 Points

Grant Dodd, Wining Pro

2005 Boundary Row GSM

A Grenache, Shiraz & Mourvedre blend from the Barossa that is right on the money. Deep lightly spicy, dark fruit flavours are the central theme but it is meaty and ultimately savoury on the finish.

Grant Dodd, Australian Golf Digest, June 2008.

Massively yum. This is a new technical term, only recently recognised by the Oxford Companion to Wine, and I have it on good authority that Jancis is in the process of appropriating it for her personal use. Regardless, it’s particularly useful as a descriptor for this hugely drinkable, lightly oaked, soft and deeply fruited wine, packed with plum, berry and spice flavours. A great example of the Barossa GSM style. Rated 91

2005 Boundary Row Shiraz

Kurtz Family wines always represent terrific value. No exception here. Tasted over two days, this wine not only held up beautifully but improved, on the second day showing swathes of chocolate and coffee infused ,blackberry and plum fruit flavors with a ticklish spiciness. The delicious-o-meter went into overdrive. This is a high quality, small volume producer worthy of greater attention. Rated 92

Grant Dodd, Wining Pro website, May 2008.

WINESTATE March/April 2008

2005 Boundary Row Shiraz

Nose slightly closed for now, with just a hint of plums and Vegemite-like yeastiness. Lovely rich fruit palate with nice malty character, ripe tannins and great oak. 4 1⁄2 Stars

2005 Seven Sleepers Dry Red Blend:

91 pts – Robert Parker, Jr. #173

Purple/black in colour, it has a brooding bouquet of smoke, spice box, blueberry, blackberry and chocolate. Medium to full-bodied, the wine is remarkably opulent for its humble price, with thick, ripe black fruit flavours, admirable balance, and a 40- second finish.

Grant Dodd, Australian Golf Digest, June 2008.

Robert Parker, Wine Advocate, #173

2005 Grenache/Shiraz/Mataro Boundary Row

89 pts – Robert Parker, Jr. #173 Purple-coloured, the wine offers lots of spice, forest floor, truffle, and kirsch in its expressive aromatics. Supple and sweet on the palate, the wine is seamless and easy to drink. With good balance and a pure finish, the wine should effortlessly provide pleasure over the next 8-10 years.

2005 Shiraz Boundary Row

92 pts – Robert Parker, Jr. #173 Purple-coloured, it exhibits an attractive perfume of violets, lavender, pepper, smoked meat, and blueberry. Plush on the palate and medium to full-bodied, the wine has gobs of savoury flavour and well-integrated components.

Joe Czerwinski, Wine Enthusiast Magazine, November 1, 2007

2005 Kurtz Family Boundary Row Shiraz

Full-throttle, obvious Barossa-style Shiraz, loaded with vanilla-scented oak, but also with blackberry fruit. The tannins are soft, imparting a wonderfully creamy texture and completely filling the mouth. Lush and oaky—this may not be for the intellectual wine drinker—but it’s definitely hedonistic. Drink now–2012. — J.C. (11/1/2007) Rated 92

2005 Kurtz Family Boundary Row Grenache-Shiraz-Mataro

The base of this is 60% Grenache from an 85-year-old vineyard near Kalimna, which provides lush black cherry fruit. That’s dressed up with hints of cola, tree bark, liquorice and chocolate from the 25% Shiraz and 15% Mataro. Tasty now, but should continue to drink well over the next 3–4 years or more. — J.C. (11/1/2007) Rated 90

2005 Kurtz Family Seven Sleepers

This is primarily Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz, but there are bits and pieces of Petit Verdot, Grenache, Merlot and Malbec included as well. So while it doesn’t show a lot of distinctly varietal character, what it does have is plenty of round, lush fruit, with hints of cedar and dried herbs and a silky finish. Drink now–2012. — J.C. (11/1/2007) Rated 88

Steve Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar

By Josh Raynolds Kurtz Family Vineyards Sep/Oct 07

2005 Kurtz Family Vineyards Seven Sleepers Red Wine

44% cabernet sauvignon, 33% Shiraz and 14% petit verdot, plus bits of Grenache, merlot and malbec) Inky ruby. Complex bouquet offers red and dark berries, plum, cedar and tobacco. Juicy and fresh, with vibrant cassis and dark chocolate flavours, supple tannins and good finishing thrust. Rated 88

2005 Kurtz Family Vineyards Boundary Row Grenache/Shiraz/Mataro

60/25/15 blend: Ruby-red. Ripe but nicely focused cherry and dark berry scents betray a slight warmth. Deep and sweet, showing powerful dark fruit flavours and a fleshy texture. The supple tannins gain strength on the finish. This needs air. Rated 87

2005 Kurtz Family Vineyards Shiraz Boundary Row

Inky, purple. Expansive, attractively pure cherry and dark berry aromas are complicated by graphite, liquorice and black cardamom. Impressively precise dark berry flavours possess very good depth and sweetness, with firm tannins carrying through the finish. Boasts serious youthful grip and cling. Rated 90

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