Reviews & Articles
Old Garden Mourvèdre 2006
"What matters is that this wine tastes like it could - and should - cost at least twice as much."
Gourmet Traveller Wine on Sep-2009
Michael Watt is the sommelier at Sean's Kitchen and Astral restaurant at Sydney's Star City Casino.
Q What wine has recently struck you as being of good value?
A 2006 Hewitson Old Garden Mourvèdre. Made from the oldest mourvèdre vines on the planted apparently (planted in 1853). It may not fit into everyone's definition of cheap, but it's still incredible value. What matters is that this wine tastes like it could - and should - cost at least twice as much.
2006 Old Garden scores 18.5 of 20
Edward Ragg, Dragon and Phoenix Wine Blog on Sep-2009
Score 18.5 of 20
Appearance: medium purple-red.
Nose: distinct, but restrained prune fruit that is immensely perfumed (cinnamon, clove, star anise) - a mark of the oak and grape inter-knitting beautifully. Complex.
Palate: gorgeous prune and dark plum fruit with surprisingly silky medium tannins, high balanced alcohol, lifting medium acidity and very good length.
Conclusion: this is a superb old vine Mourvedre - from a vineyard planted in 1853 - that is still a baby of a wine (although, with proper decanting, can show well relatively young). If this was my bottle I'd wait to 2010 to re-approach. This wine has a fine life ahead of it yet (until 2016 at least). Superb.
06 Old Garden - "93 points...structured, and powerful, this dense, layered effort is well balanced, spicy, and lengthy..."
Jay Miller, Robert Parker's The Wine Advocate
The Mourvèdre Old Garden, sourced from a vineyard planted in 1853, is a saturated purple colour with aromas of wood smoke, underbrush, blueberry compote, and blackberry. Full bodied, structured, and powerful, this dense, layered effort is well balanced, spicy, and lengthy. It demands 6-8 years of cellaring and will have a drinking window extending from 2015 to 2035.
06 Old Garden Mourvèdre - Top 100 2008 Food and Wine China
Food and Wine China, January 2009
Bright brick red with deep purple hues, the 2006 Old Garden entices you with aromas of cherry, plum, and coffee while on the palate shows blackberry, jujube and a hint of mint. This extremely well structured wine shows amazing balance and strength. It has real personality and shows absolute excellence which is why we recommend Hewitson 2006 Old Garden Mourvèdre.
View review (PDF: 109 kB)
06 Old Garden- "this wine is striking for its balance and consistency"
Nick Stock, The Penguin Good Australian Wine Guide 2009 on Oct-2008
"With more than 150 years of vine age behind it, this wine is striking for its balance and consistency. Typical meaty mourvèdre, smells of ripe plums, black minerals and citrus peel. The palate delivers essence-like flavour, even and rich, it's very complete. Soulful silky tannins and some toasty oak to close; retrospective tastings reveal this is the best with some bottle-age."
06 Old Garden- "It shows the raw impressive intensity of this wine"
Gourmet Traveller Wine on Oct-2008
"It shows the raw impressive intensity of this wine when young; quite meaty here with intense primary complexity- citrus peel, black minerals, plums and bright ripe fruit. The palate wields length and cut, quite even and rich, supple and fleshy. Very complete with dark tannins and a toasty oak finish." Nick Stock
06 Old Garden- "Deeply concentrated"
Josh Raynolds, Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar on Sep-2008
"($50) Ruby-red. Powerfully aromatic bouquet of dark cherry, blackcurrant and smoky minerals. Deeply concentrated, with meaty dark fruit flavors, chewy tannins and impressive mineral lift. Plenty of flavor here but I'd give it a few years of aging to gain nuance. These vines were reportedly planted in 1853."
06 Old Garden in James Halliday's 2009 Edition
James Halliday, Wine Compendium/ Australian Wine Companion on Jul-2008
"A somewhat idiosyncratic wine that creeps up on you by progressively building flavour and structure through the length of palate with spicy and pleasingly sour (sour cherry perhaps) notes. Screwcap. 14.5º alc. Rating 94 To 2016 $50.00"
06 Old Garden- "...drinking beautifully even as a youngster."
Gourmet Traveller Wine on Jun-2008
"The current-release 2006 Old Garden Mourvèdre (A$50/NZ$65) is flush with chocolate, mint, leather and blackberry fruit flavours, and there are damn delicious flashes of spice and orange-rind. This wine is matured in 100 per cent new French oak, and is drinking beautifully even as a youngster. It is worth every cent of its asking price." Campbell Mattinson
06 Old Garden- "It's marvellous to admire, but even better to drink."
Campbell Mattinson, The Big Red Wine Book on May-2008
"Some mad folks reckon that mourvedre is the Barossa Valley's best performing red grape. A couple of recent tastings have made me think the mad folks aren't far wrong."
"Part of the price is rarity - this is picked off a very small patch of the world's oldest living mourvedre vines (planted in 1853) - but the quality too is extremely high. It's like a good, rich South Australian shiraz complete with all the dark fruited treats you'd expect, with an X-factor attached. Describing that X-factor isn't easy, but it has something to do with the orange rind, spice-box and old dry tobacco flavours that cavort through the wine. It's marvellous to admire, but even better to drink. DRINK: 2011-2019."
06 Old Garden- Hewitson Mourvedre shows its class in ten year vertical tasting
Campbell Mattinson, The Wine Front on 04-May-2008
"Hewitson's Old Garden Mourvedre is one of the gems of Australian wine. It's made from grapes grown on vines reputed to be the oldest mourvedre vines in the world - over 160 years old - and it's bottled as a single variety, to show its character unbridled and unfettered. In this spirit it was made with only 30 per cent new oak in its early years, though as time went on Dean Hewitson saw that the flavours were so bold and strong that they could cope with, and be enhanced by, a greater per cent of new oak. In the spectacular 2002 vintage Hewitson put the wine in 100 per cent new French oak, and it tasted divine. Ever since then 100 per cent new oak has been the norm.
And it's a beautiful norm. This wine is both unique, and top class - a beautiful marriage. The following notes are from a ten year vertical tasting held in Dean Hewitson's kitchen in Adelaide recently. I've tasted most of these wines over the years, but I have not referred back to previous notes - these are simply my impressions of the wines as of now."
Hewitson Old Garden Mourvedre 2006:
"This has X-factor. This is a great result from a vintage capable of producing super wines. It is full of dark fruit flavour, though the weave of coffee, citrus and beefstock gives it oodles of individuality. It is also fresh and fragrant, with Asian spices lifting out through the finish. Super. Drink: 2011-2019."
06 Old Garden "aromas of blackberry, grilled game and dried orange"
Nick Ryan, Men's Style Australia on Mar-2008
"In the heart of the Barossa lies "the old garden", home to the oldest mourvèdre vines on the planet. Knee-high, gnarled and wizened, these viticultural Yodas offer up tiny yields of intense fruit that show you into the grape's black heart. This wine has aromas of blackberry, grilled game and dried orange. It's supple through the palate with tightly textured tannins."
View Article (PDF: 466 kB)
06 Old Garden- "It’s a complete wine - magnificent and distinctive"
www.winorama.com.au on 16-Feb-2008
"This comes off a single vineyard planted in 1853 and tasting it next to the 'Baby Bush' of the same vintage (a young vine version with cuttings taken from the Old Garden) really highlighted the intensity and concentration of flavour these old vines produce. The grapes from this vineyard are some of the last to be picked in the Barossa coming in this vintage in late May. This sees 100% new French oak and by any standard (worldwide) it's a remarkable wine. If it were a Shiraz of the same pedigree then the price would most likely be (at least) double. Mourvèdre is a most noble and under-valued grape.
Deep and brooding with dark fruit, liquorice, roast nuts. plenty of spicy mocha oak and smelling of the warm earth in which it was grown. On the palate rich and full bodied with black fruit, nuts, leather, dark chocolate and spice flavours - all distinctly adult and savoury although there is no shortage of ripe sweet fruit so it's not without a softer side. The tannins are ripe and plentiful but not intrusive and the finish is gloriously long. It's a complete wine - magnificent and distinctive." Gary Walsh
Rated : 95 Points
Tasted : Feb08
Alcohol : 14.5%
Price : $50
Closure : Screwcap
Drink : 2012 - 2020+
Source : Winery Sample