Barry Weinman: 5th March 2016
David and Cheryl Clarke bought and planted the first parcel of land for what is now Thorne-Clarke wines in 1987. Cheryl’s family (The Thorn’s) has grown grapes in the Barossa since the 1870s and, thanks to a vineyard owned by Cheryl’s dad (Ron Thorn), the winery has access to some of the oldest Shiraz vines in the world.
In addition to the two Barossa Valley vineyards, there are two in the Eden Valley. One is focussed on red grapes (Milton Park) and the other white grapes (Mt Crawford).
Thorn Clarke – Riesling – Sandpiper – 2015 (17.5). Floral notes and a touch of perfume, with lanolin highlights. The palate is round and supple, with musk and passionfruit over zesty lemon. Good length and fine acid and structure to close. A good drink. (RRP $19, but you can pick this up for around $15).
Thorn Clarke – Riesling – Eden Trail – 2015 (18). A pretty nose, with lovely floral notes and perfume. The palate is fine and elegant, with the structure and mouth-feel the key features. The gentle fruit sits well against this, making this a good drink now, but also ensuring that the wine will gain depth and presence in the bottle for many years. (RRP $24).
Thorn Clarke – Shiraz – Sandpiper – 2014 (17.5). (RRP $19). Sweet fruit that is attractive and succulent, with plum, licorice and a touch of cedar. The palate has fresh berry fruit, a touch of spice and is very gluggable. Delicious early consumption wine from the Barossa
Thorn Clarke – Shiraz – Eden Trail – 2014 (18). This has plum, spice and cherry fruit. The ripe fruit on the palate has excellent balance. The structure is quite silky, yet there is enough tannins and acid to keep the balance and allow for medium term aging. The length is commendable, with the oak framing the fruit nicely. Very approachable now, this was still looking good several days later. (RRP $28).