Big, bold, and beautiful, the 2014 Tait Basket Pressed Old Vines (93 Points – Wine Enthusiast) is Barossa Valley Shiraz at its best. Still a deep and impenetrable purple in color, this complex, full-throttle Basket Pressed Shiraz is a tour de force in winemaking. It begins its magic with a beguiling nose of blackberry, plum, dark chocolate, and exotic spices, which on their own warrant the price of admission. And in the mouth, the 2014 Tait Basket Pressed Old Vines Barossa Valley Shiraz is truly explosive, rich, and highly structured, as it offers a mouthful of delicious deep-down berry fruit, mocha, and spice flavors all wrapped in ripe, fine-grained tannins, which make for one long, lingering, lip smacking finish. Thanks to Tait’s winemaking acumen and superb basket pressing that accentuates flavor and texture without adding bitterness, the 2014 Tait Basket Pressed Old Vines Barossa Valley Shiraz should simply not be missed. For optimal enjoyment, we strongly suggest decanting this outstanding offering an hour before serving at cool room temperature (60°-64° F). Anticipated maturity: 2021-2030. Enjoy!
Tait’s complex, sumptuous 2014 Basket Pressed Old Vines Barossa Valley Shiraz could truly serve as a meal in itself, but why not double the pleasure by serving it with a kindred soul – a meal as superb as the wine? Two of our favorite accompaniments to Tait’s full-throttle Shiraz are an Herb and Black Olive Tapenade Encrusted Pork Tenderloin served with garlic mashed potatoes and Pistachio Crusted Rack of Lamb served with a mint and pea risotto, lemon espuma, caramelized Cipollini onion, feta, and a to die for highly reduced Modena balsamic reduction. A superbly grilled Tomahawk Steak offers good companionship, too. Thin slices of beef with a Shiraz demi-glaze on a bed of sweet potato mash in the company of roasted root vegetables provides another fine accompaniment. A highly charged ratatouille served with homemade pasta also makes a superb vegetarian accompaniment to Tait’s outstanding 2014 Basket Pressed Old Vines Barossa Valley Shiraz. And let’s not forget game: venison, ostrich, and other forms of wild game provide traditional pairings to Australia’s finest Shiraz wines, but as you like it. The 2014 Basket Pressed Old Vines Barossa Valley Shiraz is also big and bold enough to be a meal in itself, so good day, and good eating and drinking mates!
Tait is truly a boutique winery in all respects. Located in the small town of Lyndoch at the southern end of South Australia’s Barossa Valley, the winery overlooks the spectacular Barossa Ranges and is owned and run by Michael and Bruno Tait and Bruno’s wife Michelle. They acquired the property in 1994 to continue the Tait family’s winemaking tradition. Although relatively new to winemaking, Michael and Bruno’s family have long been involved with wine. Giovanni Tait, the brothers’ father, was a master cooper who migrated to Australia in 1957 from Italy where he worked in Barossa, making and repairing oak casks for ageing wine. He learned his trade in Italy from his father and grandfather; together they share over 100 years of experience crafting oak casks. Nevertheless, Giovanni’s ultimate dream was to one day establish a family winery called Tait Wines, which came to fruition with sons Michael and Bruno.
Tait’s winemaking philosophy is quite simple: produce hand crafted, bold-flavored, full-throttle wines that exhibit intense flavors and aromas. They use only the highest quality Barossa and McLaren Vale fruit from low yielding vines, many of which are 50-80 years of age. All of Tait’s wines are made on site and are hand crafted using traditional winemaking methods including open fermentation, extended maceration and basket pressing to ensure the highest quality and consistency.
Tait crafts several iconic wines, including The Ball Buster, a classic full-bodied Shiraz, Cabernet, Merlot blend that consistently garners 90+ points every year; The Wild Ride, a rich, superbly-made GSM (Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre) that ranks as one of Australia’s finest; The Border Crossing, a sumptuous Shiraz from across the Barossa border in neighboring McLaren Vale; and Tait’s most illustrious offering, the Basket Pressed Old Vines Barossa Valley Shiraz (this month’s feature). Tait also bottles small amounts of a varietal Cabernet Sauvignon to round out its enviable portfolio.
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