Marschall Groom Cellars
2008 Barossa Valley Shiraz
Australia: Barossa Valley
What We Say
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Mission Codename: Very Well Groomed
Operative: Agent White
Objective: Secure a very limited allocation of a beautiful and bold Aussie Shiraz.
Mission Status: Accomplished!
Current Winery: Marschall Groom Cellars
Wine Subject: 2008 Barossa Valley Shiraz
Backgrounder: South Australia’s Barossa Valley is the regions most important and oldest of wine-growing regions. Well known for its ‘pull not punches’ Shiraz, the region’s cool ocean breeze on an otherwise hot dry climate, dry limestone and clay soil and relatively flat aspect that ranges from about 800 to 2000 feet in elevation provides an ideal growing environment for Shiraz as well as Chardonnay, Semillon and Riesling.
While genetically the same as Syrah, this grape adopts its local character and Terroir to become distinctly Aussie in style. Incidentally, the name Shiraz comes from the capital of Fars (Persia) even though this grape traces its roots back to French breeding.
Wine Spies Tasting Profile:
Look – Extremely dark and dense, nearly black in color with garnet tints that show along the edges where the color pales just slightly. When swirled, this wine leaves clusters of fat chubby tears that hang on the glass before descending into thin legs.
Smell – Bold and redolent with aromas of ripe and sweet black and red fruit including blackberry, dark plum and raspberry are followed by notes of toasted and smokey oak, hot pepper, earthy undertones and black licorice.
Feel – Surprising smooth upon entry, this dry and full-bodied wine’s firm tannins grip at mid-palate and lasts into the first few moments of the finish. Well balanced minerality and a healthy dose of vibrant acidity keeps the fruit and feeling fresh and clean.
Taste – Abundant black and red fruit including plums, currants and red and black berries as found on the nose lead the way as the hot spice, earthy notes, toasted and smokey, almost graphite, oak flavors and black licorice all mingle. Adding complexity are a touch of cigar tobacco and savory meat and leather.
Finish – Medium long in length and clean in character with the hot spice and mineral texture lingering as the ripe and fresh fruit and tannins softly fades and invite another sip.
Conclusion – The 2008 Marschall Groom Cellars Barossa Valley Shiraz is a surprising well developed Shiraz considering its youth, Classic bold aromas and flavors coupled with a palate that is both sturdy and at the same time plush, smooth and approachable makes this wine easy to drink and enjoy. Its lively acidity and texture makes this wine nice for pairing, especially with just simple grilled cheese burgers.
WINEMAKER INTEL BRIEFING DOSSIER
SUBJECT: Daryl Groom
WINE EDUCATION: Degree in Enology, Applied Science. Roseworthy Agricultural College, South Australia.
CALIFORNIA WINE JOB BRIEF: Winemaker owner of Groom Wines – Australia, DXG Wines – California and Colby Red Wine – California. Previous: Vice President of Winemaking Operations, Beam Wine Estates California. Senior Red Winemaker Penfolds, Australia.
WINEMAKING PHILOSOPHY: To make wines that taste great and that showcase the unique qualities and characteristics of the vineyards we own.
WINEMAKER QUOTE: Let the vineyards do the talking..
FIRST COMMERCIAL WINE RELEASE: Groom Wines: 1998 Groom Barossa Valley Shiraz.
AGENT WHITE: Greetings, Daryl. We are thrilled to be showing your 2008 Barossa Valley Shiraz today. Thanks so much for taking some time to answer questions for our Operatives today.
DARYL GROOM: Agent Red, this is my flagship wine and the 2008 vintage I absolutely love, one of the best Groom Shiraz’ I have ever made. I am really happy to be sharing it with your wine lovers.
WHITE: Was there a specific experience in your life that inspired your love of wine?
DARYL: You won’t believe it but at the age of 16 I was introduced Asti Spumante and became fascinated with wine ever since.
WHITE: What wine or winemaker has most influenced your winemaking style?
DARYL: Being the Senior Red Winemaker for Penfold’s and being in charge of Australia’s greatest red wine, Penfold’s Grange, definitely influenced my winemaking style. It showed me 2 things. Firstly that great wine is made in the vineyard. When I tried to make many loads of grapes into Grange by waving my magic winemaker’s wand and doing all the tricks, only a few batches eventually made it. These were the grapes that had everything going for them before I even touched them. And secondly, I learned that even a big, rich powerful wine can be beautifully balanced.
WHITE: Who do you make wine for?
DARYL: After 30 years of winemaking I am confident with my own abilities & definately know the wine styles I prefer. I make wines that I personally love; I have no other agenda. The key for me is again, in the vineyard. Only the best quality fruit will make the best quality wine. After that I work on making balanced, delicious, seductive wines that people love to drink.
WHITE: Please tell me a little bit about the wine we are featuring today.
DARYL: I love this wine. The 2008 is our 10th anniversary Shiraz and 2008 was an awesome vintage. The wine is beautifully balanced with great tannin structure underlying the velvety texture. My wife’s favorite descriptor for this wine is “YUMMY!” The grapes come from our own vineyard in the Kalimna region of the Barossa Valley. We planted this vineyard in 1996. The land we purchased, surprisingly, is directly adjacent to Penfolds Kalimna Vineyard. During my era of making Grange, from 1984 to 1989, this vineyard was the mother source for this incredible, iconic wine. So the pedigree was there & it was a no-brainer for us to purchase land and plant our own vineyard. The soils in this area are unforgiving and produce low yielding vines with very small, intensely flavored grapes. We planted the vines on their own roots rather than commonly used rootstock to help maximize the quality.
WHITE: What is your favorite pairing with today’s wine?
DARYL: Being Australian, I love this wine with grilled rack of lamb, medium rare with a splash of cracked black pepper. And, by the way, it is also fabulous with a decadent chocolate dessert.
WHITE: In your opinion, what makes the Barossa Valley so special?
DARYL: It’s the people and the community 1st and foremost. Then it’s the great climate; ideal for growing Shiraz. The dry summers with plenty of sunshine and the ancient soils make for perfect for this grape variety.
WHITE: What is occupying your time at the winery these days?
DARYL: Right now I am blending my 2010 Groom Shiraz and tasting through all the barrels of my 2011 reds. They are awesome. Black, rich and flavorful. I am also extensively walking my three vineyards and setting up the protocol for the 2012 growing season.
WHITE: How would you recommend people approach your wines and wine in general?
DARYL: For my wines: With the biggest smile on their face they’ve ever had because they are going to love them! For wines in general: Always have fun and never feel intimidated because firstly, as winemakers, we make wines to be enjoyed in good times with friends and family, and secondly, because it’s your own palate and you know best what tastes good to you.
WHITE: Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers?
DARYL: I am currently having one of the greatest times of my winemaking career with one of my Californian projects, making a new wine that was initiated and inspired by my 13-year-old son Colby. Colby had back-to-back open heart surgeries at the age of 8 and 9 and came up with the idea of Colby Red Wine that would raise money for charities that promote heart health. We have been quite humbled by the success and have raised an astonishing US$140,000 so far this year. For those interested our story, and our appearance on the Today Show, visit our website www.colbyred.com
WHITE: Thank you so much for your time. We learned a lot about you – and your wine. Keep up the great work, we are big fans!
Wine Spies Vineyard Check:
The approximate location of the Marschall Groom Cellars in South Australia’s Tanunda can be seen in this satellite photo.
What the Winery Says
About This Wine:
Our 2008 Shiraz is a very, focused classy and beautifully structured wine. True to its variety, the wine is deep, black and brooding in color. The nose shows bright fresh aromas of blackberry, licorice and spice. We have purposely kept the new oak component at a minimum to allow the vibrant fruit characters of the vintage to elevate. We especially love the palate of this wine, particularly the warmth, length and velvety silkiness it delivers. This is an awesome, delicious wine that we are very proud of. Enjoy!
About The Winery:
Marschall Groom Cellars is a very small family winery situated in the famous Barossa Valley region of South Australia. The winery produces three varietals, Sauvignon Blanc, Shiraz & Zinfandel – under the label GROOM.
Marschall Groom Cellars is the culmination of a dream, backed up by many years of talk and family discussion. The proprietors are David & Jeanette Marschall and their six children, and Daryl & Lisa Groom and their four children.
The dream started to become reality with the purchase of 87 acres of bare land in the Kalimna appellation of the Barossa Valley, directly adjacent to the renowned Penfolds Kalimna vineyard – the home of Grange. In 1997 the first acres on our Kalimna Bush Block were planted to Shiraz, producing its first crop in the 1999 vintage. To compliment our young Shiraz fruit we source from one other very reputable high quality vineyard in the Barossa, the Fechner Vineyard which is home to 50 year-old vines.
The Barossa Valley is too warm to grow world class Sauvignon Blanc. This variety is ideally suited to much cooler, higher rainfall climates. After thoroughly researching the climatic conditions within South Australia, a 20 acre vineyard in the Adelaide Hills appellation of Lenswood was planted to provide the perfect grapes for our Sauvignon Blanc.
In 2000, 8 acres of experimental Zinfandel vines were planted on the Kalimna Bush Block. A very limited introductory wine release from these grapes was made from the 2003 vintage. The first Commercial release into the USA was the 2006 vintage.
Also working with the company to maintain and ensure our quality standards is Consultant Winemaker, Natasha Mooney; previously the winemaker for E&E Black Pepper Shiraz, and now working closely with Daryl to produce our stunning wines. Our wines are hand-crafted and produced in limited quantities.
Our desire for the GROOM label is to let the vineyards and their fruit do the talking in producing the style and quality of our wines. As proprietors, we have set the foundation in choosing the most ideal viticultural region needed to produce the highest quality for each of our chosen varieties. ENJOY!