The Wine Advocate’s managing editor Joe Czerwinski, who has now taken over coverage for Australian wines from Lisa Perrotti-Brown, was absolutely glowing in his praise of the Glaetzer-Dixon 2014 La Judith Shiraz
, describing it as “a tour de force of Tasmanian Shiraz, albeit one produced in micro quantities of 232 bottles. If Mon Père is Saint-Joseph, this is Hermitage.”
You may recall that Glaetzer-Dixon Family Winemakers took the wine world by storm in 2011 when their MON PèRE Shiraz 2010 became the first wine from Tasmania to win the prestigious Jimmy Watson Memorial Trophy at the Royal Melbourne Wine Show
. The win was particularly surprising because at the time Tasmania was far better known for its pinot noirs. Generally most people thought that the region was too cool for growing shiraz.
Winemaker Nick Glaetzer was intent to turn this type of thinking on its head. He set out to demonstrate how Tasmania’s ‘old’ shiraz vines, most of which were first planted in the 1970s in tiny quantities in the Coal River and Upper Derwent valleys, had the potential to create elegant, savoury, spicy and complex cool climate wines. Deliberately aiming for a style that was evocative of the Northern Rhône Valley wines, particularly from the Hermitage, Saint Joseph and Côte-Rôtie appellations, Glaetzer will no doubt be pleased with Czerwinski’s Hermitage comparison.
Other Tasmanian winemakers are also trying their hand at shiraz. Wine critic Huon Hooke was effusive in his praise for another award-winning wine, the Milton Shiraz 2014,
going so far as to ask whether “Shiraz could be the next big thing for Tasmania?” The high score and outstanding review of the Glaetzer Dixon 2014 La Judith Shiraz from one of the world’s most prestigious wine publications certainly lends weight to Hooke’s musings.