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Henschke Keyneton Euphonium Barossa Valley Blend 2016 £39.95
HENSCHKE, `KEYNETON EUPHONIUM` BAROSSA SHIRAZ/CABERNET SAUVIGNON/MERLOT/CABERNET FRANC
The Henschke family have been making wine at their estate in the Eden Valley since 1868. Fifth-generation winemaker Stephen Henschke took over running the winery in 1979. Together with his viticulturist wife Prue, they have taken their two single vineyards, Hill of Grace and Mount Edelstone, and transformed them into two of Australia’s most sought-after wines. Through a combination of great viticulture from Prue, who is at the forefront of reintroducing native plants into their vineyards to improve biodiversity, and winemaking from Stephen, they have built upon their inheritance and turned this traditional producer into one that is recognised by savvy wine drinkers throughout the world.
Keyneton Euphonium is a beautiful composition of Shiraz from up to 50-year-old vines growing in the Eden and Barossa Valleys, blended with Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc from selected vineyards in both regions, some of which were planted by Cyril Henschke at his Eden Valley property in the 1960s. The Barossa hills village of Keyneton, pioneered by pastoralist Joseph Keynes in 1842, was a musical and cultural focus for the early settlers and was home to the Henschke Family Brass Band, founded in 1888. It featured wind instruments such as a B flat euphonium, a large brass wind instrument, which has been lovingly restored and remains in the Henschke family.
Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc grapes were hand-harvested in the cool of the morning. Each parcel was picked separately and remained so throughout the vinification process. Once in the winery, the grapes were destemmed and lightly crushed, either into small, concrete, open-top fermenters, or small, stainless steel open-top fermenters. A submerged cap was performed in order to manage a slow tannin extraction. The fermentations were controlled with pump-overs being performed twice daily, allowing the liquid to be cooled via a heat-exchanger, with air being introduced on the return to the fermenter. After 7-10 days and just prior to reaching dryness, the fermentations were gently pressed to barrel with the primary fermentation finishing in 71% French and 29% American oak (13% new and 87% seasoned) hogshead barrels. The wine matured for 18 months before assemblage and bottling, with the wine remaining in bottle for two years before its release.
Deep crimson with bright crimson hues. Intense aromas of ripe, spicy redcurrant, plum, rhubarb and blackberry with lifted hints of cassis, violets, sage, bay leaf, black pepper, baking spices and cedar. The palate has excellent depth and structure with plush, ripe dark fruits and a balanced acid line driving the mid-palate and finishing with savoury spice and dried herbs in unison with the elegant, fine-grained tannins.
95 Points - Gold - James Halliday's Wine Companion
'Matured in French and American hogsheads (18% new) for 18 months. The bouquet does indeed bellow from the glass like that a euphonium. It has a swag of red, black and purple fruits all in tune, something very different for drinking now.'
92 Points - The Real Review
'Very deep and intense ruby-red colour throughout the glass. Mulberry and wakame aromatics. A medium-weighted shiraz that still shows bright fruit with a layer of tobacco leaf and bracken savoury. Fine-boned tannins give good length and drive. Supple and harmonious'
93 Points RobertParker.com
A blend of Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc, the 2016 Keyneton Euphonium beautifully marries the mint and herb of the Bordeaux varieties with the plumminess and spice of the Shiraz. Hints of mint, tea and violets accent dark, plummy fruit, then finish with savory overtones of black olive. It's full-bodied and supple, ready to drink now or age 15 or more years.