by Jess Ruciack
1 March is a special day here at Elderton – it is the global release date of the new vintage of Command Shiraz each year. And today we are excited to release the 2017 Command Shiraz to the world!
Way back in 1894 the Scholz family planted a Shiraz vineyard on the banks of the North Para River in Nuriootpa to allow the family a modest farming income. At the time, little did they know that this vineyard would be highly celebrated 100+ years on, for being one of the most remarkable vineyards in Australia and the world. The second generation of Ashmeads and Elderton Co-Managing Directors, Allister and Cameron, as the current custodians of a rare piece of Barossa Valley viticultural heritage, continue their parents aspirations and expectations to produce a great wine of the world. The Command is truly an expression of place, and one of which the family intends to preserve for generations to come.
2017 Command Shiraz – a Barossa Shiraz icon
Grown from a wetter than average growing season, with some small rain events through summer, the fruit had ample opportunity to ripen perfectly. Whilst not a boisterous Barossan vintage, the 2017 shows remarkable composure and poise through its typical muscular frame.
Jules and Brock’s winemaker notes share a little more about this wine:
Command is the sum of several small batch picks to ensure we capture every part of the vineyard at optimum flavour concentration. We hand harvested this fruit over three weeks, allowing for the ripening process across the different soil compositions. The 2017 vintage saw us finish later than average, on 12 April. The long and gentle ripening season, peppered with some showers after a winter flush with rain, ensured for intense fruit concentration in the finished wine, with a depth of seamless tannin yet elegance only achieved in great years.
Aroma Lifted ripe plums with hints of Christmas cake spice, and subtle gamey notes
Palate Rich and attractive spicy ripe berries reminiscent of summer pudding, supported by silky tannins that together provide a focused structure, and a powerful yet elegant finish
Jane Faulkner tasted the 2017 Command Shiraz for the 2021 Halliday Wine Companion and wrote some lovely words:
This does command respect thanks to the fruit coming off 123yo vines and the care with it from that moment right through to the winemaking. It is powerful and divine. Lush with the dark fruit coated with chocolate, pepper and coffee. The palate feels all velvety with the tannins neatly placed, the oak integrated and with a glass in hand, a sense that all’s well with the world. 96 points, Halliday Wine Companion
Also available are a limited release of 2017 Command Shiraz magnums (1.5L). With only 100 bottled, this is a great special addition to any cellar. SHOP FOR MAGNUMS.