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WS93, Sub-$15 Red from Torbreck's Former Winemaker - 11/01/2017 - Australia

Earning a stellar 93-point rating and priced just under $15, the 2015 Powell & Son "Riverside" is easily one of the best deals in an Aussie red that we’ve seen in years. When our Aussie wine buyer first tasted this beauty, he was stopped dead in his tracks as the wine was nothing short of monumental. This might sound crazy when speaking of a sub-$20 bottle, but all it takes is one sip and you’ll be a believer. While the vintage and the vineyards played crucial parts in crafting this masterwork, ultimately it was the talents of David Powell (the former winemaker for Torbreck) and his son Callum that really deliver the magic. Perfectly composed and utterly delicious this red outperforms its more-than-modest price by leagues. While its Barossa imprint is unmistakable, the influence of the Southern Rhône also shines through putting it on par with some of the best we’ve had out of Gigondas and Châteauneuf-du-Pape. Lush, expressive, and with an almost hedonistic display of fruit, this head-turner is going to immediately draw countless fans both near and far. Best of all is our remarkably sharp price you won’t find anywhere else. Stock this 2015 up by the caseload, as we’re certain you’ll want to enjoy it again and again. Kudos to David and Callum for making such an outstanding wine.

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2015 Powell & Son "Riverside" Grenache-Syrah-Mourvèdre Barossa Valley South Australia ($14.99)

93 points Wine Spectator: "A supple, seamless mix of cherry and raspberry flavors, with dried violet, savory and smoky details, accented by hints of sarsaparilla. Polished and refined, especially on the effortless finish. Grenache, Mataro and Shiraz. Drink now through 2030. (MW)" (06/2017)

Jancis Robinson: "Mid to deep cherry red. Lots of spice and bright, juicy dark-red fruit aromas. Spicy on the palate too, sweet fruited and very silky. Gentle and fresh on the finish. Lively aftertaste. (JH)" (10/2017)

K&L Notes: Winemaker's notes: Powell & Son wines are sourced from various vineyard sites throughout the Barossa and Eden Valleys. Callum and Dave Powell employ traditional, minimalist winemaking techniques to produce a wine that speaks of the place that it was grown. Their inspiration for winemaking having its roots in France’s Rhone Valley, Powell & Son red wines are made from the classic Rhone varietals: Shiraz, Grenache and Mataro and its whites: Roussanne, Marsanne as well as Eden Valley Riesling. The Powell philosophy is that a great wine is made in the vineyard and so Callum and Dave work the vineyards they use on their own in the Winter and Spring seasons, then in Autumn pick the fruit and vinify using old concrete ferment vats and basket pressing, producing unique and expressive wines from their most prized vineyards throughout the Barossa.

Staff ImageIvan Diaz | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: October 26, 2017

This is damn delicious, easy-drinking and surprisingly light on its feet. "GSM" blends from Barossa can sometimes feel too weighty or high in alcohol, but Powell & Son has crafted a perfectly restrained bottling for fans of both Australia and Rhone wines. Barossa reveals itself with a core of super-ripe raspberry, boysenberry, and dried cherry flavors. It gains a bit of complexity along the way from some spicy clove, cedar, and black pepper. Velvety from start to finish, and never letting up on the vibrant fruit or fleet acidity, this has got to be one of the most purely enjoyable $15 bottles I've ever tasted.

Staff ImageAnthony Russo | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: October 23, 2017

Spicy, earthy dust with blackberries and strawberries. Dried cedar box notes and fresh oak flavors round this Barossa GSM into a sleek, velvety, delicious package. If you're typically a Rhone drinker, at this price, you gotta try one.

Staff ImageDavid Driscoll | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: October 18, 2017

This wine blew my mind and I was already a big fan of Dave Powell from his Torbreck days. Not only is it a crazy complex, thrilling, and complex bottle of wine, it's also one of the best deals I've come across in the 2017 calendar yearperiod. You don't have to be a Barossa fan to enjoy this one. Rhone fans and California fans should jump ship to at least try a bottle. There's big, ripe fruit, but it's bolstered by savory spice, meaty notes, smoke, and even a bit of scorched earth. The value available here for the "Riverside" is a direct result of our direct relationship with Dave and the winery. You won't find a Rhone-style blend this exciting for this price anywhere else. It's a mouth-coating experience that evolves into something truly special from the first sip to the finish. I've gone back numerous times to taste this one and on each occasion I've been just as excited by the wine. You can tell that Dave used some serious fruit for this expression.

Staff ImageStefanie Juelsgaard | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: October 17, 2017

This is hands down going to be a please everyone wine at an incredible price. I can't believe the high quality winemaking of the Powells could result in another phenomenal wine they are willing to give away for so little. Soft, lush fruit shines through here and there is no harsh, stemmy tannin or blazingly high acid to fight with. While there are many GSM blends out there, this one really stood out for me due to its sheer drinkability, without being a flat, ripe fruit bomb sometimes associated with the Barossa. Simply a good, easy-drinking wine that I find to be a fantastic value for the price.

Staff ImageRyan Woodhouse | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: October 06, 2017

Maybe one of the best deals I've secured in the last 5 years as our Australian Buyer. The sheer value offered by this wine convinced me in one sip to take the entire allocation offered by Dave and Callum Powell. When I committed to the wine it had no scores but that didn't matter, I was convinced that the quality of the wine in the bottle would make it a winner regardless of critical acclaim. The wine is a near-perfect rendition of this classic southern Rhone blend with the added intensity and richness of Barossa Valley. Big, lush, ripe fruit melding from red to black fruit, scorched earth, sweet spice. The ripe tannin are as smooth as silk, the wine is mouth-filling and bold but not at all over-the-top or excessive. Crafted by a master of his trade from the same vines that previously went into some MUCH more expensive bottlings at his prior place of employment ...enough said...the 93 points from Wine Spectator purely the icing on the cake.