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Everything you need to know about Barossa’s most exceptional shiraz wines

Peter Lehmann is often referred to as the man who saved the Barossa Valley. His name and reputation are legendary throughout the region and Australian winemaking history. Today, Peter Lehmann Wines is one of the most established family-owned wineries in the region and renowned for producing exceptional shiraz wines.

Learn about the brand’s history before taking a gourmet journey through its most exceptional shiraz varieties.

The humble hero

The late 1970s were difficult times for the Barossa wine community as the region was hit with a severe grape surplus. As companies refused to buy grapes and honour contracts, Peter Lehmann knew this would destroy the livelihoods of the 140 family growers.

In a courageous bid to support his community of growers, Peter refinanced his house, took out a loan, assembled equipment and built a small winery to process their grapes. The winery was called Masterson of the Barossa, in a nod to the famous gambler, Skye Masterson. Peter committed to paying the growers once he had sold the wine; this promise was sealed with a handshake and Peter’s word was his bond. True to his promise, when the money started coming in, Peter made sure to pay his growers first.

Today, these longstanding relationships with the same network of family growers give the Peter Lehmann winemakers unrivalled access to the very best grapes across the length and breadth of the Barossa.

World-class shiraz

Barossa has a 175-year-old tradition of producing Australia’s finest shiraz and founder Peter Lehmann was particularly passionate about the varietal. The wines he is most famous for are his generous, rich and full-bodied shiraz wines.

The passion for shiraz among Peter Lehmann winemakers is as evident today and they continue to stretch the boundaries of shiraz while remaining true to Peter’s founding winemaking philosophy.

Tasting notes

MASTERON Shiraz – 98 Points, Huon Hooke

To mark the winery’s 40th anniversary in 2020, the inaugural release of the 2015 MASTERON Shiraz was limited to just 1,000 magnums.

As a tribute to Peter Lehmann and the brand’s unrivalled access to the region’s best grapes – as a result of the trusted relationships he forged with grower families over the years – MASTERSON is the best single vineyard Barossa shiraz of vintage and will only be released in exceptional years.

With 2015 presenting an excellent vintage, a pristine parcel was sourced from a small block of immense pedigree on the Hammerling family vineyard in the Moppa district of the Barossa’s Valley. Glen Hammerling has been a Peter Lehmann grower since the early ’80s and is incredibly proud to provide the grapes for the first MASTERSON Shiraz.

The wine was matured in a 2500-litre oval foudre barrel to age gracefully with a further year of bottle maturation prior to release. It is drinking beautifully now, with excellent cellaring potential for years to come.

2015 MASTERSON Shiraz | RRP $2,000

Colour – Concentrated, deep black core with a crimson rim.

Nose – Abundant with blue fruit, fresh blackberry and juicy fig. There are nuances of spice and delicate charred notes, with warming undertones of toasted cedar.

Palate – Textural with intense fleshy red and blueberry fruits that persist through an undercurrent of graphite minerality and complemented by delicate waves of aniseed spice and dark roasted coffee bean flavours to finish.

2015 MASTERSON Shiraz

Stonewell Shiraz – 2019 Sydney International – Blue Gold and Top 100

The story of Stonewell Shiraz began in 1987 when Peter Lehmann decided to make a special shiraz – a wine of immense intensity and structure that would demand time in barrel and bottle before release.

The wine was named ‘Stonewell’ after the district Peter believed best showed the characters admired most in Barossa shiraz. This tradition has continued and each vintage the best shiraz fruit from its extensive network of growers is chosen to create Stonewell. Usually, no more than a dozen small, old vineyards are selected each year, the oldest planted in 1885. The berries are small and sparse with crops typically less than 1.5 tonnes per acre.

The pedigree of these vineyards and the knowledge that has been passed down from each grape-growing generation to the next, ensures that Stonewell Shiraz is a wine of great longevity that can be cellared with confidence for many years to come.

Peter Lehmann was awarded Australia’s most prestigious red wine trophy, the Jimmy Watson, for the 1989 Stonewell Shiraz and since then this wine has enjoyed unprecedented global acclaim including a longstanding Langton’s Classification of Outstanding.

2013 Stonewell Shiraz | RRP $100.00

Colour – Deep indigo coloured core with a vibrant crimson edge.

Nose – Lifted plum and violet florals beautifully merge with complex aromas of anise, choc-mint and sweet toffee.

Palate – A full-bodied Barossa Shiraz showing an extremely opulent mid-palate, exuding ripe plum and blueberry flavours. The palate is well supported by mocha and vanillin notes and finishes with abundant but fine, velvety tannins.

2013 Stonewell Shiraz

2015 Masters Eight Songs Shiraz – 92 Points, James Suckling

‘Eight Songs for A Mad King’ was one of Peter Lehmann’s favourite vocal ensemble musical works, loved for its soft harmonies, inspiring Peter Lehmann to emulate art in a wine unlike anything else he had made before.

Eight Songs Shiraz was first made in 1996 with the aim of producing a decisively soft and velvety style of Barossa wine. Sourced from some of the oldest, low-yielding vineyards across the Barossa, this wine has been matured in 100% new French oak hogsheads. The winemaking team seamlessly integrates the opulent fruit and velvety tannins to create a distinctly elegant wine with an abundance of mocha chocolate and dark plum fruit characters.

2015 Masters Eight Songs Shiraz | RRP $45.00

Colour – Deep red with a black core and an alluring vibrancy brought upon by a crimson edge.

Nose – Aromas of ripe plums and sweet dark chocolate intertwined with the complexity of freshly ground coffee and subtle warm spices.

Palate – Rich, opulent and full-bodied exhibiting classic Barossa shiraz characters of moreish chocolate nuances and subtle spice. There is an incredible richness of flavour, which suggests immense longevity.

2015 Masters Eight Songs Shiraz

This article was produced with content supplied by Casella Family Brands and is a Signature Luxury Travel & Style digital exclusive. Be the first to see more exclusive online content by subscribing to the enewsletter here.