2002 Torbreck "Factor" Shiraz Barossa Valley South Australia

SKU #1012526 99 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Remarkably, the 2002 The Factor may be even more awesome than the 2001. It boasts a blackberry liqueur-like intensity with chocolatey richness intermixed with blackberries, raspberries, and cherries. The unctuous texture, refreshing acidity, and sweet tannin frame-up this magnificent wine. It should drink well for 15+ years. Interestingly, the 2002 The Factor did not have the Cote Rotie-like roasted element found in the 2001, no doubt because 2002 was a much cooler growing year than the record heat experienced in 2001. (RP)  (10/2004)

96 points James Halliday

 Fragrant, luscious fruit aromas; gorgeous texture and structure; a complex array of both red and black fruits drive the wine, oak merely a vehicle; fine, filigreed tannins.  (10/2004)

93 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Deep, saturated ruby-violet. Intensely aromatic, even perfumed on the nose, with aromas of kirsch, superripe blackberry, molten chocolate, rose oil and violet. Concentrated, fat and unctuous, showing sweet flavors of raspberry and blackberry confit, smoked bacon, molasses, fruitcake and candied orange peel. Finishes with excellent lift and defining acidity for a wine of such ripeness and power.  (7/2005)

Jancis Robinson

 My first bottle of this 100 per cent Shiraz was a little cheesy, but the second was much more like it – toasty nose with lovely salty savour and great glossy Shiraz fruit. A sweet start was followed by an ample, spreading palate and then, still, a bit of chew on the finish. It's made from the extremely shy produce of seven ancient vineyards in Ebenezer (with some overlap with Run Rig fruit) put into oak, 30 per cent new, for two years. 18/20 points.  (7/2005)

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Price: $129.99
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Varietal:

Shiraz/Syrah

- One of France's noblest black grape varieties, Syrah is known for its intense and distinctive perfume reminiscent of briar fruit, tar, spice and black pepper and its firm structure. One of few black grape varietals frequently vinified on its own, the best examples of Syrah come from the Northern Rhône, particularly Hermitage, but also Côte-Rôtie, Cornas, Crozes-Hermitage and St-Joseph. These wines are very astringent in their youth, though some Crozes-Hermitage and St-Joseph can be enjoyed young, relatively speaking. Given the requisite patience, though, these wines can reveal amazing complexity and secondary fruit characteristics like plum and blackcurrant as well as subtle hints of smoke and flowers. In the Southern Rhône, Syrah is used to add structure and complexity to wines dominated by Grenache and complemented by Mourvèdre, like the more immediately drinkable Côte du Rhônes, as well as the long-lived wines of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. In recent years, plantings of Syrah have spread throughout the Languedoc-Roussillon where it is produced on its own or blended with other varietals. Outside of France, the most important Syrah growing country is easily Australia, where it is called Shiraz. Quality levels here depend greatly on yields and geography, and the wines range from bold, fruity and easy-drinking to intense and ageable, like the famed Penfolds Grange. Often bottled on its own, in Australia Syrah is also can be blended with Grenache and Mourvèdre, as in the Southern Rhône, and is increasingly combined with Cabernet Sauvignon. Syrah has also been steadily increasing in popularity in California, thanks to a group of advocates called the Rhône Rangers. Its most successful iterations come from the Central and Sonoma Coasts, where winemakers are pushing boundaries and creating some incredible wines. In recent years Syrah has also found a number of proponents in Washington State, which is definitely a region to watch for this variety.
Country:

Australia

- While it is true that the greatest strides in Australian winemaking have come in the last 30 years or so, commercial viticulture began as early as the 1820s and has developed uninterrupted ever since. The majority of the great wine regions are in the southeastern area of the continent, including Barossa Valley, Clare Valley, McLaren Vale, and Coonawarra in South Australia; Yarra Yarra Valley and Pyrenees in Victoria; and the Upper and Lower Hunter Valleys in New South Wales. Many of the wines from Southeastern Australia are based on Shiraz or Cabernet Sauvignon and various blends including Grenache and Mourvedre. In Western Australia, along the Margaret River, great strides are being made with Pinot Noir as well as Bordeaux-styled reds. There are also many world-class releases of Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc from the land Down Under, where Riesling also enjoys international acclaim. While many equate Aussie wines with “value,” there are more than a few extremely rare and pricey options, which never fail to earn the highest ratings from wine publications and critics throughout the world. View a list of bestselling items from Australia.
Sub-Region:

South Australia

Specific Appellation:

Barossa Valley