The Pioneer

Shiraz 2013

This pinnacle release Shiraz is crafted from the very finest fruit selection and is entirely estate grown and bottled on the Taylor family estate in the Clare Valley, South Australia.

More Information
Previous Vintages 2012
Region Clare Valley
Colour At release the wine is a deep crimson red with a vibrant purple hue.
Nose Fragrant spice, dark cherry, plum, dark chocolate, freshly roasted coffee beans & charry oak characters.
Palate This is a commanding wine with multiple layers of intense, lush dark berry fruit followed by spicy fruitcake & seductive mocha. The palate is full and generous but with precision to the structure and an appealing texture with velvety, mouth-coating tannins mingling harmoniously with fruit & spice. Elegant acids and light, long tannins carry the palate to a persistently rewarding finish.
Vintage Conditions Growing conditions leading up to vintage 2013 were benign, apart from a frost event in mid-October. It was a dry growing season with few rainfall events. Early December saw 30mm rain which was a season changer. Harvest conditions were excellent starting early February. Our winemakers reported excellent acid balance & flavour development.
Oak Maturation Post MLF, the wine was matured in a selection of fine-grained American oak barrels. 40% in new oak & the balance in 1- 3 year old barrels. A barrel selection assessment took place after a year to identify parcels deemed 'exceptional' to return to barrel for 8 months maturation prior to bottling.
Cellaring Notes Immediately approachable but will cellar well in ideal conditions for up to 20 years from vintage date.
Alc%: 14.5
Acid: 5.84
Residual Sugar: 0.7
Wine Type: Red
Wine Body: Full
Blend or Single Variety: Single Variety
Pack Size: Single: 750ml bottle Case: 3 x 750ml bottle
  • 2016
  • Melbourne International Wine Competition
  • Double Gold
  • 2016
  • China Wine & Spirit Awards
  • Double Gold
  • 2016
  • The Global Syrah Masters
  • Gold
  • 2017
  • Vinalies Internationales
  • Gold
  • 2017
  • The Asian Syrah Masters
  • Gold
  • 2017
  • AWC Vienna International Wine Challenge
  • Gold
  • Rich Cook, Wine Review Online

    Dec 2018
    95 Points
    I went gaga over the 2012 iteration of this wine, and this vintage isn’t far behind. Scents of blackberry pie, fall spice and a complementary hint of menthol entice on the nose, and are delivered on the palate with classy oak tones and a touch of tar adding to the mix. My focus here is on the moderate palate weight which suits the flavor profile, keeping things bright and brassy. Big beef preps, lamb or medium plus cheeses will only elevate the proceedings.
  • Robert Whitley, Wine Review Online

    Dec 2018
    95 Points
    Showing richness and length on the palate, the 2013 Pioneer... is an impressive expression of Australia’s signature grape variety. Spicy, with a somewhat restrained note of eucalyptus, and notes of blueberry and blackberry, the 2013 is beautifully balanced and just now beginning to hit its stride.
  • Christina Pickard, Wine Enthusiast

    Jun 2018
    93 Points
    The Taylor family top wine offers enchanting aromas of mocha, milky coffee, vanilla, licorice and sun-ripened raspberries and blackberries. It's texturally plush, with a fair amount of richness, silky tannins and well integrated oak. This should age with exceptional grace. Drink 2019–2027.
  • Isaac James Baker, Terroirist

    Nov 2018
    93 Points
    Deep purple color. Aromatically, I get waves of deep, dark fruit (blackberries, blueberries, black cherries) and complex bursts of eucalyptus, black pepper, espresso, violets, anise. Big and full on the palate, built well with tannins but the edges are fine and the acidity here is really inviting and refreshing. Suave blackberry, blueberry, black currant, mixed with coffee, anise, dark chocolate, eucalyptus, with an earthy, peppery finish. Long time ahead but beautiful young. Aged 20 months in French oak.
  • MaryAnn Worobiec, Wine Spectator

    Mar 2017
    92/100 Outstanding
    Rich, with espresso, chocolate, and kirsch deatils, accented by hints of fresh mint. Offering a supple texture, this is elegant and expressive on the long finish. Drink now thorugh 2030.
  • Nick Stock,

    Jul 2017
    Plum liqueur and cake are the main feature on the nose here, as well as a hint of crumble. Full body, rich tannins and a slightly cloying finish make for a rich yet enjoyable style.
  • Raymond Chan, Raymond Chan Wine Review

    Jul 2018
    Full, even, black-red colour, near impenetrable, a little lighter on the rim with slight purple hues. The nose is softly packed with a core of ripe blackberry fruit along with black plums, liquorice and earth, with some tar. The aromatics bloom and are ethereal with real volume, unfolding subtle layers of exotic spices and sweet oak from the heart. The aromatics show power with finesse, and are expressed with immense harmony and integration. Full-bodied, the palate has an incredibly rich, smoothly packed and layered core of ripe blackberries, black plums and boysenberries entwined with earth and tar complexities, lifted by sweet, spicy and exotic oak. The flavours fill the mouth, showing opulence, exoticism and decadence, and are supported by plenty of fine-grained, powdery tannin providing great structure and presence. The flavours carry to a very long, multi-faceted and multi-dimensional finish. This is an incredibly rich and opulent Shiraz with exoticism, structure and presence with sensational ethereal oak finesse. Match with game meat and semi-hard cheeses over the next 15+ years. A barrel selection wine. Shiraz fruit fermented to 14.0% alc., the wine aged 12 months in 40% new American oak, and after selection, given a further 8 months barrel maturation.
  • Alistair Cooper MW, Jancis Robinson

    Sep 2019
    17 Points
    A barrel selection of the best from St. Andrews, then aged for a further 20 months. Quite developed, showing leafy secondary notes and damp earth. Very soft palate, which is remarkably developed; soft and silky tannins and roasted coffee notes. The alcohol just stands out a little on the long finish.
  • Richard Hemming MW, Jancis Robinson

    Jan 2019
    17 Points
    Wreathed in coconut and sweet spice that tells of the oak, but full of rich, black fruit too. Super-sweet, with very long, confected vanilla flavours on the finish. It’s an exaggerated style, but one that satisfies the expectation of grape and origin. So, a wine of terroir, then – in which the oak is an essential element.
  • Adler Yarrow, Vinography

    Jul 2020
    Very dark garnet in the glass, this wine smells of cola nut and prunes. In the mouth, rich flavors of mulling spices and black cherry, leather and cola nut have a beautiful woody and saddle leather backdrop to them. Faint tannins and decent acidity. Notes of caramelized brown sugar linger in the finish. 14.5% alcohol. Closed with a screwcap.