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Hesketh Wines

G.A.R. the Great Australian Red

Our new flagship release –  this wine is about the sum of its parts being greater than the individual components. Two immaculate vineyards. Two of the very best sub-regions. Crafted by some of Australia’s greatest winemaking talent, utilising the finest French oak and small-batch facilities.

RRP AU$60.00 | ORDER NOW

Vintages and Tasting notes

2019

(Click to download PDF)

Wine Press and Accolades

90 points - Nick Butler – 09/03/2021

Bright purple colour softening to red edges. Ribena and cedar; oak-char and an attractive herbal leafiness. Clean and lively. Ripe cabernet fruit carries the day with lovely energy; straight forward and immediately accessible. Tannins fully ripe and integrated. A pure and classic expression and well-priced. Drink 2020 – 2028.

94 points - Campbell Mattinson – 13/04/2021

The G.A.R. stands fro Great Australian Red. Cabernet and Shiraz. Coonawarra and McLaren Vale. It’s a very good one too. This is a svelte red wine with power, structure and length all on its side. Redcurrant fruit flavour mostly but with blackcurrant, mint, musk and tobacco notes all contributing. It’s an ultra smooth display. It’s sheeted with fine-grained tannin. It’s impressive. Drink 2023 – 2032+.

94 points - Jeni Port – 13/04/2021

What a great wine title: G.A.R. It’s reason enough to get almost teary-eyed about Australia’s truly indigenous red blend of cabernet and shiraz and why it is so darn good. These two grapes were made for each other: the stiff, upper-lipped cabernet provides the structure and classic shape while relaxed, generously fruited shiraz provides the warmth and approachability. And the two regions involved – Coonawarra and McLaren Vale – and the two families – Hardy and Hesketh – are South Australian, which is fitting because that’s where the great Aussie blend has its home and biggest fan base. G.A.R. (they have to trademark those initials!) arrives in youthful, purple-garnet shades. Coonawarra cabernet takes the lead in aroma with bush mint, dark plum, leafy blackberry, anise, while Vale shiraz contributes a deep earthiness. Cabernet steps up on the palate with trademark firmness of tannin and structure with both grape varieties unfolding a bevy of black fruits, mint, earth, spice and a light touch of herbal leafiness. Oak is nicely integrated. Tannins are firm but not intrusive. It spreads itself long across a supple, almost sinewy, palate. And so ageworthy, too.

92 points - Huon Hooke – 11/05/2021

Deep, bright red/purple colour, with a raspberry and cassis bouquet, fruit-driven. A fragrant wine with some leafy, forest floor, almost humus-like notes. Full-bodied, with tannins that come across a little firm on the palate, lingering on the aftertaste. It’s deep and emphatic, but also elegant—even better with protein-rich food, or after a little cellaring.

95 points - Ray Jordan – 12/04/2021

This is a blend of Coonawarra cabernet Sauvignon and McLaren Vale shiraz. The powerful structural contribution from Coonawarra adds a defining character to the McLaren Vale shiraz. UT retains a mid-palate opulence with chalky fine tannins supporting. This is a classic example of how Australia without the restrictions of Laws and boundaries can produce a wine that brings different parts together. Cellar to 18 years

97 points - Kim Brebach – 02/02/2021

A new take on the classic multi-regional red blends of old, made from Coonawarra Cabernet (Penola) and McLaren Vale (Blewitt Springs0 Shiraz, and it’s a winner. I’m sure Andrew Hardy set out to breed a race horse, a Melbourne Cup winner, and he’s succeeded. It’s a strapping young thing, bursting with energy and rearing to go, big and boisterous but with a gentle temper. So much breeding. Glorious red and black fruits touched up with just the right amount of oak, exotic spices and dark chocolate in the background. So silky smooth for such a youngster, with all the elements united in their focus on making the wine greater than the sum of its parts. This red will win hearts and minds and trophies, no doubt about that. OK, it’s a show pony with obvious charms but you can’t take your eyes off it. 97 points, and yes it’s worth the money for once. Made me think of the late sixties grey label reds from Wolf Blass, and that’s a big compliment.

94 points - Nick Stock - Jamessuckling.com – 05/07/2021

So well melded in every respect, this has dark-berry and plum aromas and flavors with some light herb and bracken on the nose, too. The palate is boldly fleshy and delivers plenty of rich fruit flavor, in the dark-berry and plum zone. Smooth and approachable, yet fleshy and intense. Nicely blended style. Drink or hold. Screw cap.

92 points - Steve Leszczynski – 13/05/2021

Australia’s gift to the red wine world is cabernet shiraz blend. Say hello to the Hesketh GAR, or more precisely, Great Australian Red. The Flagship of the Hesketh range, it is firm, dusty with really good depth that rides long. A little smokey, dark chocolate and dark plums rattle through. Classic cabernet traits of blackcurrent and mint go about their work a swell before a cigar box skips out late. Rock solid, this will age well.

94 points - Tyson Stelzer - 2022 Halliday Wine Companion – 02/08/2021

Coonawarra cabernet and McLaren Vale Shiraz, matured for 18 months in 35% new French oak hogsheads. Coonawarra cabernet is a classic partner with warm-climate South Australian shiraz and this new rendition is set to go down among the greats. Fragrant, taut and fine-boned, it’s packed with spicy, crunchy berry fruits. An intricate mesh of fruit and oak tannins unites with vibrant acid drive, setting off a long finish and grand longevity.

91 points - Joe Czerwinski - Robert Parker Wine Advocate – 02/08/2021

G.A.R. stands for Great Australian Red, a blend of Cabernet and Shiraz. In the case of Hesketh’s 2019 G.A.R. Coonawarra Cabernet McLaren Vale Shiraz, the varieties come from different regions as well. Hints of capsicum appear on the nose, joined by blackcurrant and red raspberry fruit. It’s medium to full-bodied but shows more of a Cabernet shape on the palate—streamlined and gently austere rather than broad or lush—coming to a silky, taut finish. While it should drink well for up to a decade, there’s no real need to cellar it. Drink 2021 – 2030.

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