2015 Two Hands ARES
Region: Barossa Valley, South Australia
Deep, dark red with a black core. Deeply pitched aromas of blackberry, sage, cacao beans, lavender and Christmas spice. Crashes across the palate with authority. Lots of density of flavour, rich and vibrant fruits and deeply embedded yet complexing notes of dried lavender, star anise, coffee grounds, and cacao beans add depth and intrigue.
The idea for Two Hands was born in September 1999 when founders Michael Twelftree and Richard Mintz sat at a friend’s engagement party and decided it was time to make their own wine and market it on the world stage.
The original aim was, and still is, to make the best possible Shiraz-based wines from prized growing regions throughout Australia. With so much Australian wine being sold around the globe under multi-region labels in a formulaic style, the intention was to break the mold and showcase the diversity of Australian Shiraz by highlighting regional and vineyard characteristics by allowing the fruit to be the primary feature of the wines.
Quality without compromise is central to the Two Hands philosophy, driving all the decisions from fruit and oak selection to packaging and promotion. From the outset, Two Hands set out to be unique and innovative, this approach is reflected in everything from the names of the wines through to, not least, the wines themselves. From small beginnings, the winery has been able to manage its growth organically whilst maintaining an absolute quality focus. Premium fruit is sourced from the finest Shiraz growing regions in Australia, and Two Hands works closely with its estate vineyards and band of growers to ensure the full potential of each vineyard is reached. They handle every parcel of fruit, however small, separately from crushing through to fermentation and oak maturation to ensure complexity and personality in the finished wines.
In its simplest form, it could be said that they squeeze the grapes and put them in a bottle. However, in practice there are many different steps and countless hours involved, from vineyard, through to winemaking, tasting, blending and maturation in order to make consistent, quality wines.
96 Points Robert Parker
A blend of fruit from three historic vineyards in three separate parts of Barossa, the 2015 Ares Shiraz is a top-flight effort. Loaded with vanilla and red currants on the nose, it's a full-bodied, rich, velvety wine, perhaps a bit open-knit for truly long-term cellaring but flashy and attractive now and over the next decade or so. Fine notes of baking spices bring complexity to the red fruits on the long, crisp finish.