Tait The Ball Buster 2020
Rich cherry red color, with concentrated aromas of mulberry, spice, rosemary and earthiness with hints of vanilla that jump from the glass. The palate is rich showing ripe and rich fruit, great length and a velvety soft lingering finish.
93% Shiraz, 4% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Merlot
2018 – 91PTS The Wine Advocate
2015 – 90PTS The Wine Advocate
2014 – 90PTS The Wine Advocate
Fruit for the 2020 Ball Buster was sourced from 7 different sites in the Barossa Valley. Vine age varies between 10-30 years. The grapes are de-stemmed and tipped into large open fermenters, pH is adjusted and fermentation takes place over 7-10 days at a temperature of approximately 74 degrees F. Plunging and pumping over takes place 3 times a day during this peri- od. The wine is then gently pressed using traditional basket presses. Juice is drained from there to barrel, where it spends 18 months in a combination of used French and American oak. The oak that is used, is there to impart some subtle flavors but more importantly, to create softness in the wine. Blending of the different com- ponents wine takes place to ensure a wine which is dark in color, rich and juicy on the palate and full bodied, but with good balance and length. Ball Buster is always bottled unfined & unfiltered.
Rainfall in the Barossa during the 2019/20 growing season was the driest year on record, approximately 50% of what is considered average. Coupled with the dry weather, the Barossa endured frosts and high winds during spring which lead to small bunches and small berries. Late November and December saw temperatures in the high 30 degC and low 40’s. Of the last 16 days in December, 11 were over 35C and 8 over 40C. January and February were not as extreme with rain in early February allowing vines to fully ripen the fruit. Despite the extremes flavors, color and overall quality in Shiraz, Cab Sav, and Merlot was exceptional.
The first production of the Ball Buster in 2002 was 600 cases. It entered the market at a time when Aussie wines were on fire, but high scoring ones were expensive. Bruno Tait committed him- self to making an awesome Shiraz based Barossa red, and having it retail for under $20. This vin- tage marks Tait’s 16th year of this iconic blend, named as a “tongue-in-cheek” tribute from Bru- no to his wife, Michelle. This is the only wine in the world to ever receive 10 or more consecutive 90 point reviews or higher, in The Wine Advo- cate, at the $20 mark. In fact, the 2016 vintage marked 15 straight vintages since its inception, of 90 point or higher reviews – a feat that is unlikely to ever be repeated by any other wine. Not much has changed over the years. It is still made with high quality fruit and hand crafted winemaking. Even as production volumes grew, Bruno has been committed to maintaining quality and avoiding shortcuts and price gouging. For those consumers that enjoy the opulence of wines like The Prisoner, but would like some elegance as well – this one’s for you.