Deep crimson with purple hues. Intense and lifted aromas of blueberry coulis and spiced Satsuma plums surrounding hints of briary blackberry, bay leaf, anise, black pepper and Dutch licorice. Pure and lush, the richly fruited palate shows layers of complex black and blue fruits, intense plums and black pepper that intertwine with mocha, chicory and cedar flavours and balance beautifully with natural acidity and silky tannins for a long, fine finish.
The 2014 vintage began with the winery coming alive to the fragrant aromas of fermentation. But what a year we had! This year, the moon cycles put Easter quite late in the season,
so the expectation of a late harvest prevailed...until South Australia experienced its record number of heat days over 40C in January, culminating in the worst bushfire in Eden Valley in living memory. This taste of hell ended in the wettest February in 44 years - all in 48 hours, when we received between 115 and 150mm of rain. Fortunately, Eden Valley and the Adelaide Hills were still in veraison, which allowed the quenching rain to rebalance the fruit, particularly in the older dry-grown vineyards. The yields appeared depressingly minuscule, due to a severe black frost in spring and cold windy weather during flowering in early
December. Early picks of semillon and shiraz after the heat wave were in response to vine stress. The change to mild autumnal weather in late February after the rains allowed for a focus on other early vintage varieties, riesling in Eden Valley and pinot noir at Lenswood. Mild weather with cold dewy mornings and windy days prevailed. Disease pressure
increased as March became colder and wetter, which seemed to change to a winter pattern after the equinox. It was indeed a late vintage and also resulted in one of our longest
vintages. The picking of Eden Valley cabernet and Lenswood merlot brought the season to
a close at the beginning of May, where skilled vineyard teams played a critical role by hand selecting and picking the best quality fruit during the onset of rain and cold wintery weather.
In summary, a challenging season with good quality but very low yields.
"Snap a Tappa – Stephen and Prue Henschke sourced 60-year-old, low yield grower shiraz vineyards, in Eden Valley and other venerable vines of growers, from Light Pass as well as Tappa Pass in the Barossa Valley, for the Henschke Tappa Pass Vineyard Selection Barossa Shiraz 2014. After an excellent vintage, maturation was in 27% new and 73% seasoned French hogsheads before blending and bottling. Bright crimson with purple tints, the wine has the fragrance of ripe redcurrants with hints of mint and peppery spice. The medium-bodied palate presents layers of varietal flavours, will integrated with oak and fine-grained tannins. Cellaring potential 25+ years from vintage."
"This wine has charm in spades. Tappa Pass isn’t in what I would call the ‘flagship’ wine suite of Henschke, but it deserves at least a stool or bench at the table on its consistent form. Smooth, rich, potent, amply-flavoured shiraz. Oozes dark fruits and driedfruits, spice, cedary wood, all mellow nad integrated and riding on flashes of lively acidity. Supple, generous, yet not overwhelming, it’s a fleshed out, ripe flavoured, potent shiraz, trimmed with very fine ropes of tannin. Feels classy."
"Since its release, Tappa Pass has eased into a sweet spot in the Henschke shiraz portfolio. Shiraz sourced from three mature 50 year-old vineyards in the elevated, somewhat cooler Eden Valley is given the full Henschke treatment in open fermenters and aged in French oak for 18 months with 61 per cent new barrels. Wild blackberries, liquorice and bay leaf aromas flow seamlessly to the rich mouth-filling palate. Fine tannins shape the wine and carry the finish to a confident conclusion.”
"This wine makes quite an impression, for all the right reasons. It’s rich and complex, with dark fruits, Christmas spice and earthy flavours. The balance between ripe, concentrated flavours and vibrant acid is near-perfect, while a wash of fine, powdery tannins round off an impressive finish. Enjoy with Roast Lamb."