James Halliday 95 or higher!
James Halliday's reviews 2014: 20yo vines, machine-harvested, crushed/destemmed, open-fermented with cultured yeast, 5 days on skins, matured for 15 months in French oak (50% new). An impressive shiraz, medium to full-bodied, but with seriously attractive savoury nuances throughout, giving it a character all of its own, with a fusion of blackberry/plum flavours ex the /Barossa Valley, and earthy/bitter chocolate a la McLaren Vale.
Drink by: 2039
James Halliday's reviews 2015: The difference between this and The Wark Family shiraz, aside from the price, is Big Jim apparently showcases the best fruit off the Stonewell vineyard and is aged 18 months in French barrels, 40% new. An impenetrable dark purple hue; moves into bigger, bolder, riper territory without falling over, with shades of satsuma, black and tart plums, currants, savoury notes of hot bitumen and roasted coffee beans, all completely absorbing the oak while adding a layer of sweet cedary flavours. Full-bodied, tannins and acid the key - velvety yet powerful, refreshing and uplifting respectively.
Drink by: 2030
James Halliday's reviews 2016: Crafted from select shiraz sourced from the Wark family's Stonewell site, this is a burly red invoking a Barossan classicism, while glimpsing a fresher zeitgeist. Some sexy oak, nicely toasted, is bundled together with kirsch liqueur and blue fruit allusions. The finish is persuasive, but what is truly hedonistic is the expansive sweetness across the wine's core, somewhat akin to drinking mulberry pie with some bitter chocolate thrown in. Creamy oak tannins wrap it all up nicely. A manicured package of rich fruit and well-positioned oak for those who like it smooth.
Drink by: 2031
James Halliday's reviews 2017: The colour is showing development consistent with the spicy/savoury overtones to the blackberry fruit at the core of the wine. The oak contribution is in balance, as is that of the tannins.
Drink by: 2032
James Halliday's reviews 2018: Oodles of sweet, blueberried fruit flavour, an appropriately lavish swoosh of smoky oak and just the right volume of fine-grained tannin. Every box here has been ticked with a flourish. Satiny smoothness is a key feature, as indeed is balance.
Drink by: 2033