Tolpuddle 2018 Release

The single site wine has leapt to the upper echelons of Australian wine consciousness in a relatively short while, and, of course, has become an anticipated release and, of course, the associated commentary. Dazzling winemaking, loaded with personalities of the Shaw + Smith juggernaut and their arsenal of wine intelligence… MIKE BENNIE, The Wine Front

If ever a winery was born with blue blood in its veins, Tolpuddle would have to be it. The vineyard was established in 1988 on a continuous downhill slope facing northeast, and in 06 won the inaugural Tasmanian Vineyard of the Year Award. Michael Hill Smith MW and Martin Shaw are joint managing directors. David LeMire looks after sales and marketing; Adam Wadewitz, one of Australia’s brightest winemaking talents, is senior winemaker; and Ray Guerin, one of Australia’s most experienced viticulturists, with specialist expertise in cool climate vineyards, is group viticulturist. Vineyard manager Carlos Souris loses nothing in comparison, with over 30 years of grape growing in Tasmania under his belt, and an absolutely fearless approach to making a great vineyard even greater. JAMES HALLIDAY

I was going to say that this is one of the most exciting projects in Australian wine but we have been saying that for years now and I don’t think we can really keep calling it a project anymore. How about, this site in the hands of the what is akin to the all-star team in Michael Hill-Smith, Martin Shaw, Carlos Souris (Vineyard Manager) and of course Adam Wadewitz AKA Wada making the wines is now producing some of the best wines in Tasmania and indeed the big island to the north of it.

I don’t think they really need much of an introduction these days, they have garnered something of a rabid following after all the huge press and multiple awards in recent times. I will say this the 18s are gorgeous and very different animals to their 2017 counterparts. The Chard is perhaps a little finer, there is still that saline twang and the palate staining drive I have come to expect here but it feels a little more graceful in its flow.

The Pinot this year is something else. Both Alex and I were a little distracted when these wines were being poured but both of us stopped still when we tried this. Plenty of detail and nuance, the tannins form a supportive network that are definitely present but not intrusive. That’s all well and good you expect that level of quality and winemaking from this, what really struck me was the texture. The wine has volume and richness without seeming overdone in anyway, far from it. It fills your mouth as it glides across the palate and covers every part of it in sumptuous fruit leaving an impression of sweetness that lingers for some time. It is, in a word, beautiful.

As is usual with these wines we are offering them pre-release. They are due to arrive early September and sadly, also as is usual, there is not much to go around. I won’t beat around the bush here, they will likely sell out in a couple of hours and orders will be dealt with on a strictly first in first served basis so as to be as fair as possible.

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