Screaming Value From Heathcote, Australia

Today’s Story: Jasper Hill

Jasper Hill is a small family owned and operated winery in Heathcote, Australia founded by Ron and Elva Laughton. The Laughtons planted their vineyards beginning in 1975 with all of the vines own rooted (not grafted for resistance to Phylloxera) and today they include Emily’s Paddock (3ha Shiraz with 5% Cabernet Franc) and Georgia’s Paddock (12ha Shiraz, 3ha Riesling, and 1ha each of Semillon, Nebbiolo, and Viognier). There was a third vineyard, Cornella Vineyard, that was 4ha Grenache but it unfortunately burned in 2013. Jasper Hill’s vineyards are organically farmed and they do not use irrigation, insecticides, herbicides, synthetic fungicides, or artificial fertilizers. Meanwhile all pruning and harvesting is accomplished by hand and tillage remains low. Thanks to minimal intervention in both the vineyards and cellar, Jasper Hill wines are meant to display their terroir with honesty while maintaining the innate character of each variety.

2013 Occam’s Razor Shiraz

100% Shiraz (Syrah); 15% ABV

The 2013 Occam’s Razor Shiraz is opaque deep purple in color with ruby variation near the rim. After opening up for an hour and a half, the wine showcases a nose of blackberry, juicy plum, blueberry, cassis, lavender, cigar box, wet gravelly soil, graphite, light baking spice, and toasted oak. Once on the palate, this displays notes of black plum, black cherry, redcurrant, black licorice, sweet tobacco, loamy earth, smoke, slate, black pepper, and chocolate. This is full-bodied with medium acidity, medium (+) somewhat chewy tannins, and a long finish dominated by black fruits and iron.

Price: $30. This is an outstanding value, perhaps the greatest value Shiraz I’ve had to date. The wine drinks with such elegance and beauty you could mistake this for something at least twice its price. Pair with a bacon cheeseburger, roasted leg of lamb, or duck.

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