November 2018 – Bruno on his latest trip to the US had the great pleasure of sitting down with Joe Czerwinski from the Wine Advocate to show Tait latest releases and also back vintages of the wines that has been a stable for Tait over the last 20 years.
His reviews have just been released
THE WINE ADVOCATE
JOE CZERWINSKI – NOVEMBER 27, 2019
Tait’s Ballbuster has been a perennial favorite in the Wine Advocate since Robert Parker first rated the 2002 92 points back in 2003. I caught up with proprietor Bruno Tait during a September visit to the United States, which provided an opportunity to look at a selection of back vintages and current releases. Although the family name is Scottish in derivation, Tait’s parents emigrated from Italy in the 1950s. His father was a cooper and found work in the Barossa at Gramps and later Seppeltsfield, until the early 1990s. In 1995, the family purchased land in Lyndoch to build a winery; the first commercial vintage was 1996. While the family initially didn’t purchase any vineyards, it now owns 40 acres, sufficient for about 30% of the winery’s needs). Tait describes the winemaking as traditional, with open fermenters, pneumatic plungers and basket presses. These are big, flavorsome wines, with The Ballbuster being about 75% to 80% Shiraz and the rest a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Even better is the Basket Pressed Shiraz, a single-vineyard wine sourced from the Rowland Flat subregion. Looking back at the older vintages, it appears these wines are capable of aging up to 20 years. “The Giovanni” Shiraz is a new offering, first made in 2013 and not yet released. It’s meant to compete in the ultra-luxury space. With its flashy new oak and plenty of concentrated fruit flavors, it will be interesting to see how it is priced.
2016 Tait • The Ball Buster Proprietary Red
Drink Date: 2019 – 2030
The current release of the Ball Buster is the 2016 The Ball Buster Proprietary Red. Like previous vintages, it’s a full-bodied, plushly textured red, dominated by Shiraz (80%), with smaller amounts of Merlot (12%) and Cabernet Sauvignon (8%). Hints of dark chocolate accent black cherry and plum fruit, while the velvety tannins linger on the finish.
2014 Tait • Shiraz Basket Pressed
Drink Date: 2019 – 2035
The 2014 Shiraz Basket Pressed comes from a different Rowland Flat vineyard from the one that went into this bottling through 2010, with younger vines planted on unirrigated sandy soils. The style remains the same, with big, bold fruit backed by soft oak shadings and ample richness. It’s full-bodied and velvety on the palate, with a long, fruit-driven finish.
2014 Tait • “The Giovanni” Barossa Valley Shiraz
Drink Date: 2020 – 2035
Slightly more refined than the rambunctious 2013, the 2014 “The Giovanni” Barossa Valley Shiraz is more drinkable at this stage. It’s still full-bodied and rich but also more open, lush and inviting. Cherries, cedar and vanilla meet baking spices on the nose and palate. This is velvety and plush on the finish but less concentrated than the 2013.
2013 Tait • “The Giovanni” Barossa Valley Shiraz
Drink Date: 2020 – 2035
From the same sandy Rowland Flat site that’s used in the Basket Pressed Shiraz, Tait’s 2013 “The Giovanni” Barossa Valley Shiraz is the family’s first entry into the ultra-luxury market (although pricing hasn’t yet been determined). Aged three years in 50% new French oak (the rest aged in a mix of third-fill barrels), this Shiraz fits the winery style of being big and bold, but the new oak gives it more structure and length on the palate. Black cherries and licorice join with vanilla and baking spices in this full-bodied, full-flavored wine.
2010 Tait • Shiraz Basket Pressed
Drink Date: 2014 – 2035
Bright cherries join dark chocolate notes in the 2010 Shiraz Basket Pressed, which approaches 16% alcohol yet doesn’t come across as overly warm or spirity. Yes, it’s a big, full-bodied, fruit-forward mouthful of wine, but it shows a fair degree of elegance on the silky-textured finish.
2010 Tait • The Ball Buster Proprietary Red
Drink Date: 2012 – 2025
The middle-aged 2010 The Ball Buster Proprietary Red offers up sexy aromas of cigar box and dark plum and black cherry fruit. Full-bodied, round and generous in the mouth, it offers a rich mouthful of hedonistic fruit. The blend this year is 77% Shiraz, 16% Cabernet Sauvignon and 7% Merlot.
2008 Tait • Shiraz Basket Pressed
Drink Date: 2012 – 2030
The 2008 Shiraz Basket Pressed was picked before the heat wave, and it shows in the wine’s fresh, almost minty aromas and black cherry fruit. It’s still ripe and full-bodied, but fresh in style, with faint vanilla overtones and a creamy, plush texture.
2008 Tait • The Ball Buster Proprietary Red
Drink Date: 2010 – 2022
From a vintage that was dominated by a heat wave, Tait’s 2008 The Ball Buster Proprietary Red is 77% Shiraz, 12% Merlot and 11% Cabernet Sauvignon. It’s full-bodied and plush, with cedary overtones (despite no new oak) and attractive dark, plummy fruit. Round and warm, it picks up notes of dark chocolate and licorice on the finish.
2006 Tait • Shiraz Basket Pressed
Drink Date: 2010 – 2030
From vines that were about 50 years old in a single plot in the Rowland Flat subregion, the 2006 Shiraz Basket Pressed features youthfully floral oak aromas, blackberries and black cherries. It’s full-bodied, creamy and lush, with subtle notes suggestive of American oak, hugely hedonistic flavors and texture, and it has a long finish.
2004 Tait • Shiraz Basket Pressed
Drink Date: 2008 – 2025
A single-vineyard selection from the Rowland Flat area, the 2004 Shiraz Basket Pressed offers hints of Bourbon on the nose, alongside notes of cola, roasted meat, black cherries and mulberries. It’s full-bodied and supple, with ample concentration and plenty of life still ahead of it.
2004 Tait • The Ball Buster Proprietary Red
Drink Date: 2006 – 2020
The 2004 The Ball Buster Proprietary Red is a blend of Shiraz, Cabernet and Merlot. It’s meaty and savory in profile, with rich, dried-fruit character on the nose. Black cherries, tobacco, vanilla, spice and a bit of warmth are on the palate, which is full-bodied, supple and creamy. The first vintage of this wine was the 2001.
November 2017 – Wine Spectator – Global Reach – 150 wines from around the world that offer outstanding quality at $25 or less
There are now producers in every corner of the wine world delivering well-priced bottlings that consistently earn outstanding ratings of 90 points or higher on Wine Spectator’s 100-point scale
Tait Wines Ball Buster makes an appearance, scoring 90+ points, 13 years in a row. see: Global Reach
November 2017 – Wine Spectator – TOP 100
Wine Spectator editors survey the wines reviewed over the previous 12 months and select their Top 100, based on quality, value, availability and excitement. This annual list honors successful wineries, regions and vintages around the world.
Tait Wines Ball Buster makes an appearance, scoring 36 in the Top 100. see: Top 100
After many years of our faithful label, we decided a change was due. We feel the new label is more sophisticated and elegant yet displays the strength and integrity of the TAIT family name and the wines we create.
The stories on the back labels remain for “The Ball Buster” and “The Wild Ride” so you will still be able to refer to the “tongue in cheek” banter that has drawn you to the wines!
Consistency pays off!
The Ball Buster is the only wine under $20 that has received 90 points and above for 11 consecutive years from the Wine Advocate. What an accolade!!!
The 2012 Ball Buster – one of Australia’s Greatest Value Wines 2014
We are thrilled to announce the 2012 Ball Buster was listed as one of Australia’s Greatest Value Wines 2014 by Lisa Perrotti-Brown of The Wine Advocate. In writing about her personal favorite wine bargains of the year Lisa notes “ 2012 was a fantastic vintage in South Australia for effortlessly producing great value Shiraz and Grenache… one of the most consistent high-quality value wines out of the Barossa: The Ball Buster!”
February 2015 – Canadian LCBO puts The Ball Buster on their Front Page !!!
The LCBO, Canada, features the 2012 Ball Buster on the front cover of their VINTAGES February 2015 magazine
This release focuses on Australia’s magnificent 2012 vintages. See what is written about Tait Wines !!
August 2012 – 96 pts Nick’s Wine Merchants
2008 Basket Pressed Shiraz Super saturated inky black colour with deep dark red black hue. The nose displays lifted scents of dark chocolate, very ripe blackberry and liquorice with an overlay of vanillin oak. Huge palate flavours boasting super rich dark chocolate, ripe blackberry, liquorice, vanillin oak and spice flavours. Extravagant and decadent with an opulent texture. Drink over the next 4-5 years.
August 2012 – 95 pts Nick’s Wine Merchants
2010 The BallBuster Blended of 77% Shiraz, 16% Cabernet Sauvignon and 7% Merlot. Totally opaque inky black crimson colour with very deep black crimson hue. The nose displays good intensity with aromas of ripe blackberry, dark chocolate, liquorice and black plum with a touch of spice as an end note. Rich, thickly textured palate with voluptuous flavours of dark ripe plum, dark chocolate and liquorice followed by some toasty vanillin oak and spice on the back palate. Velvet smooth tannins. Long liquorice, black plum, dark chocolate and spice aftertaste. Another big fruit bomb red from Tait. Drink over the next 2-3 years
July 2012 – 92 pts Stephen Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar (JR)
2008 Basket Pressed Shiraz Glass-staining ruby. Heady, exotically perfumed bouquet of dark fruit liqueur, incense and candied flowers, with notes of vanilla, clove and cocoa emerging with air. Lush and deeply pitched but shockingly energetic, offering intense blackberry and cherry-vanilla flavors and strong spicy lift. Closes on a sappy note, with excellent clarity and floral-dominated persistence. Nothing at all shy about this wine, but nothing vulgar, either.
July 2012 – 91 pts Stephen Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar (JR)
2010 The BallBuster Glass-staining purple. An expressive, heady bouquet gives out candied red fruits, potpourri and Asian spices, with a smoky nuance gaining power in the glass. Rich but lively, offering vibrant raspberry and cherry-cola flavors and notes of allspice and star anise. Sweet and silky on a finish that keeps on with impressive tenacity and spiciness. This wine always delivers outstanding value.
March 2012 – 92 pts Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate
Tait 2008 Basket Pressed Very deep garnet colored with a touch of brick, the 2008 Basket Pressed Shiraz offers a complex nose of mulberries, blackberry preserves and dried plums over hints of baking spices, Ceylon tea, tobacco and sandalwood. Very full bodied, big and powerful in the mouth, it offers generous layers of warm berry, dried fruit and baking spice layers supported by refreshing acidity and a medium to firm level of rounded tannins. The finish is long, spicy and just a little warm. Drink this one now to 2018
March 2012 – 90 pts Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate
Tait’s 2010 The BallBuster gives a very deep garnet purple color and pronounced notes of spiced blackberries, blueberry pie filling and stewed plums with hints of freshly cracked black pepper and fenugreek. Very full bodied and richly fruited, it has a good line of crisp acidity lending lift and a medium to firm level of velvety tannins, finishing long and peppery. Drink it now to 2016.
September 2011 – 91 pts Stephen Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar
Tait 2009 The Ball Buster (a blend of Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon and merlot; 15.5% alcohol): Bright purple. Fresh blackberry and blackcurrant aromas are expansive and strikingly energetic. A deeply concentrated blend, offering sweet, sappy black and blue fruit flavors and refreshing spicy snap. The spiciness builds with air and carries through the persistent, floral-accented finish, which features silky tannins
2011 Vintage report
The 2011 vintage has now ended.
The vintage has proven to be challenging however the resultant wine is great in colour and has good flavour. The challenge this year was combating and staying on top of disease due the high rainfall during the summer. Here at TAIT we spent a lot of time walking through our own and contract vineyards to ensure the fruit we picked was disease free. Unfortunately we were unable to pick from some vineyards due to the disease. These decisions were not made easily. People’s year long efforts were taken away overnight. The wines are now tucked away in barrels waiting to undergo malolactic fermentation. For those who don’t know about malolactic fermentation it is when hard malic acid is converted to a much softer lactic acid making the wine softer. We are now looking at our 2010 wines, checking sulphur levels and topping the barrels.
Check out the range of pictures taken from the 2011 vintage
April 2011 – 2008 Basket Pressed Shiraz
After the success of 2006 Basket Pressed Shiraz, the 2008 version is now ready for release.
The 2008 Basket Pressed Shiraz is typical of the Basket Pressed wines. The grapes are sourced from vines that are 60-70 years old, are open fermented for 7-10 days, basket pressed and spend 18 months in 1-2 year old American wood. The wine is big in flavour, colour and has a powerful long lasting finish.
For those asking about the 2007, unfortunately it did not come up to standard and hence we are going to the 2008
Parker review on the 2009 BallBuster – Lisa Perrotti-Brown – 90 points
A blend of 73% Shiraz, 15% Merlot and 12% Cabernet Sauvignon, Tait’s 2009 The Ball Buster provides a deep garnet color and aromas of blackberry preserves, prunes, mulberries and dried leaves with nuances of Indian spices and dusty earth. Full bodied and rich in the mouth, it has a high level of acid providing freshness to the generous fruit and a medium-firm level of grainy tannins, finish long with lingering notes of anise. Drinking now, it should remain good to 2015+.
Nov 2010 – Barrel Storage Shed – Complete
We finally moved into the new barrel shed. This little beauty is fully insulated and temperate controlled. We now have room to store up to 1000 barrels. The real bonus is we have another BBQ spot!