The Wine Companion
The Wine Advocate
Wine Spectator Online
Media Reviews (Global)
Descendant - The Wine Advocate (Robert Parker)
Deep garnet-purple colored, the 2012 Descendent offers gorgeously pure notes of violets, vanilla and cinnamon stick over a core of black cherry, blackberry and wild blueberry notes plus and hint of cloves. Full-bodied, concentrated and built like a brick house, the spectrum of flavors, ripe, abundant tannins, clever balance and epically long finish make this a Descendent that rivals its forefather.
: 2017 - 2032
: July 15
Deep garnet-purple in colour and projecting intense aromas of creme de cassis, warm black plums and blueberry compote enhanced by hints of tar, aniseed, smoked meat and even a slight lift of honeysuckle, the full-bodied 2010 Descendent is already displaying great harmony at this early stage as it fills the mouth with perfumed black fruits supported by medium to firm, rounded tannins and balanced acid. It finishes very long.
: now - 2024
: Feb 14
Deep garnet-purple in color, the 2009 Descendent has 8% co-fermented Viognier in the blend which lends lovely floral, peach blossom and violet aromas to complement an intense blueberry preserves, dark chocolate and star anise aromatic core. Very full and rich, it has a lovely acid vibrancy alongside medium to firm, very fine tannins and a long finish.
2015 - 2025+ |
Deep garnet colored with a touch of purple, the 2008 The Descendent (Shiraz blended with a little Viognier) offers aromas of warm blackberry preserves, stewed plums, prunes, mulberries and coffee underlying hints of black olives and soy. Big, powerful and opulently fruited in the full bodied mouth, it’s packed with dried fruit and savory flavors and well supported by a medium level of velvety tannins and crisp acid. It finishes long and spicy.
2012 - 2018+ |
The 2007 Descendant is composed of 92% Shiraz and 8% Viognier sourced from a single vineyard. Super-fragrant with a fl oral lift from the Viognier component, it gives up exotic scents of smoke, bacon fat, Asian spices, and wild blueberry. Voluptuous on the palate with loads of succulent fruit (a rarity in this challenging vintage), it has impeccable balance and 4-6 years of aging potential. It will be at its best from 2013 to 2027.
2013 - 2027 |
The Shiraz for the 2006 The Descendant is sourced from a single vineyard and co-fermented with 8% Viognier. It was aged for 18 months in seasoned French oak. Opaque purple-colored, it emits an expressive, sexy perfume of violets, wood smoke, black pepper, espresso, blueberry, and chocolate. Full-bodied, on the palate, this voluptuous effort has great concentration with a noticeable uplift from the Viognier, tons of spicy black fruits, enough ripe tannin to evolve for a decade, and 60-second finish. It should provide pleasure from 2016 through 2036.
Torbreck, under the leadership of owner/winemaker David Powell, remains a Barossa Valley benchmark as well as one of the world’s leading wine estates
2016 - 2036 |
The 2005 Descendant is composed of 92% Shiraz and 8% Viognier which are co-fermented. The fruit is sourced from a relatively young vineyard in Marananga planted with 11-year-old cuttings from the Run Rig vineyards and aged for 18 months in 2.5-year-old French barrels previously used for Run Rig. Opaque purple, with glass-coating glycerin, it offers up a complex array of lavender, violets, blueberry, blackberry, and fresh road tar. Full-bodied, on the palate the wine has great concentration with a noticeable uplift from the Viognier, gobs of spicy black fruits, opulence, and well-concealed tannins which will carry this wine for 10-15 years of further evolution. Drink it through 2030. Torbreck, under the leadership of owner/winemaker David Powell, remains a Barossa Valley benchmark as well as one of the world’s greatest wine estates. The top cuvees are limited production and expensive but there are also some outstanding values in the portfolio. With regard to the current vintages for the Barossa red wines, David Powell states “2004 is more savory while 2005 has more purity and definition. 2004 is more classic, 2005 will take longer to come around.”
2017 - 2030 |
The 2004 Descendant, an old oak-aged blend of 92% Shiraz and 8% Viognier from a 12-year old vineyard, offers up notes of blackberries, ink, sweet truffles, and acacia flowers. There are 1,000 cases of this full-bodied, intense, rich blockbuster. It will drink well for 10-15 years.
2006 - 2021 |
Primarily Shiraz with a tiny dollop of Viognier, the blockbuster 2003 Descendant spent 18 months in used French oak (barrels that were previously used for Torbreck’s flagship cuvee, Run Rig). A spectacular perfume of flowers, blackberries, cassis, licorice, and honeysuckle is followed by an unctuously textured, full-bodied red displaying a seamless integration of wood, tannin, acidity, and alcohol. With elegance, power, richness, and just about everything one could want in a full-throttle, beautifully balanced dry red wine, it will drink well for 12-15 years. David Powell, unquestionably one of the world’s finest wine producers, has an uncanny ability to discover old vine Barossa vineyards, and then secure long term contracts for their fruit. It is amazing that such high quality sources have not already been plucked by Australia’s giant wine corporations. Torbreck’s wines continue to get better and better, combining the old vine ripe fruit of Barossa with a European sensitivity to elegance and balance. The finest wines in this portfolio are pricy, but David Powell delivers some remarkable reds and whites at prices that are more than fair for the quality in the bottle.
2005 - 2020 |
There are 1,000 cases of the 2002 Descendant, a blend of 92% Shiraz and 8% Viognier that spent 18 months in 2-year-old French oak. The fruit is sourced from the section of the Barossa Valley known as Marananga. The Viognier and Shiraz are co-fermented together, and the name, Descendant, comes the fact that it is essentially the same blend as the famed Run Rig, but sees no new oak. A magnificent effort, the dense ruby/purple-colored 2002 Descendant offers gorgeous aromas of crushed blackberries, raspberries, licorice, acacia flowers, and the added notes of honeysuckle and apricots from the Viognier. Full-bodied and opulently textured, with good tannin, structure, purity, and a broad, expansive finish that lasts nearly a minute, it needs 1-2 years of cellaring, and should keep for 12-15+.
2005 - 2019 |
Aged in used French oak casks for 18 months prior to being bottled unfiltered, the 2001 Descendant is a 1,000 case blend of 92% Shiraz and 8% Viognier cropped at approximately 1.5 tons of fruit per acre. This spectacular Australian red offers an aromatic smorgasbord of honeysuckle intermixed with blackberry and creme de cassis liqueurs, licorice, coffee, and spice. There is fabulous fruit purity, tremendous intensity, and great balance with flavor, power, and elegance all combined into a riveting example of Barossa Valley wine. It should drink well for 10-12 years.
2003 - 2015 |
The 2000 Descendant is a single-vineyard Shiraz that includes 8% Viognier. There are 560 cases of the 2000, a magnificent example aged completely in used French oak for 18 months prior to being bottled with no fining or filtration. This exotic offering boasts an inky purple color along with a gorgeously sweet nose of blackberry liqueur intermixed with licorice and Viognier's honeysuckle character. It has great texture, fabulous length (the finish lasts for 50 seconds), and incredible fruit purity. I would not be surprised to see it firm up in the bottle. This pedal-to-the-metal, full-throttle Shiraz is a singular expression of Barossa Valley fruit. Anticipated maturity: now-2015.
2002 - 2015 |
Deep garnet-black in color, the 1999 Descendant shows intensely earthy and meaty aromas accented by notes of charcoal, smoked meat, dark cherry compote, some menthol and anise. Full-bodied and rich, more so in the mouth than on the nose, it is structured by firm, grainy tannins and crisp acid. The finish gives long, layered and concentrated savory notes with hints of licorice and fennel seed.
2013 - 2018+ |
The 1999 Descendant is a blend of 92% Shiraz and 8% Viognier from a five-year old vineyard. There are 220 cases of this cuvee, which spends 18 months in used French barrels prior to bottling. Its dense purple color is followed by blackberry, creme de cassis, and floral aromas, huge body, terrific fat and glycerin, and a seamless, decadently rich finish. It is a tour de force in pleasure. This wine not only makes for compelling drinking, but it is also a huge amount of fun, and isn't that what it's all about? If I had to give an award to Australia's finest winemaker in 2001, it would be hard not to consider David Powell.
The 1997 Descendant (100% Shiraz fermented on Viognier pomace) represents Australia's quintessential example of power and elegance. While not massive, its level of concentration is extraordinary. Made from 7-year old Shiraz vines that were cropped at a minuscule 1.25 tons per acre, this black/purple-colored wine offers a feminine, silky, voluptuousness allied to fascinating levels of richness, unbelievably sweet tannin, and layers of flavor. In the glass, the wine develops magnificently. A bottle kept open for 48 hours displayed additional nuances and complexity. Full-bodied, but not heavy, this is a tour de force in winemaking, as well as a thrilling Shiraz to drink. No other wine from Australia remotely resembles it. In truth, the closest wine to which it could be compared is Marcel Guigal's single vineyard Cote Rotie La Turque.