I adore elegance and sophistication in a wine. Many wines are light, but others are big. Being big doesn’t mean that they are necessarily great. Size does make a statement, but that can be a bit boorish. However, sometimes a statement is truly that. You stop in your tracks, soak in as much of the awe as possible, and enjoy the dimensions for what they are. You realise that some wines are seldom matched, and that’s because of sheer size. You may not be able to take in too much, otherwise you’ll be overwhelmed. But at the end of the day you know you’ve experienced something really special.
Such is the 2015 Thorn-Clarke ‘Ron Thorn’ Barossa Shiraz. A tribute to Cheryl Thorn’s father. This is a no-holds-barred all-out statement. Impenetrable black-red colour, with a touch of garnet. Then a voluminous bouquet packed full of ripe plums with spices, liquorice black-earth and a huge whack of spicy, cedary, pencilly oak. Its’ an out-there wine, but strangely it works well. It’s fulsome and pushy, but it still draws you in. On palate just packed with dense flavours of plums, blackberries, liquorice, and that layering of exotic oak. The mouth is weighed down with extract and richness, but there’s grip too. The wine doesn’t leave your mouth. It just stays and stays. Then there’s the length. You can’t drink a glass of this quickly. You sip it and see how it fills all the places in your mouth other wines haven’t been to before. It’s a magnificent monster. Totally lovable, but you can only take so much.