2016 Yalumba Octavius Barossa Valley

  • Among the World's Oldest Shiraz, Datick Back to 1854 
  • "A Powerhouse." ~96 Decanter
  • Crafted by 2x "Winemaker of the Year"
  • Vegan & Sustainable Certified
  • Free Shipping on 6 or More Bottles

About the Wine

Yalumba winery was born in 1849 when founder Samuel Smith planted his first vineyard in the heart of Barossa Valley. Forty-four years later, Fred Caley Smith (from the third generation of the family) started developing sustainable viticulture and winemaking, which is still implemented to this day. The winery has a strong sense of responsibility for the environment, which has earned them more than 43 accolades for their sustainable practices, including the “International Award of Excellence for Sustainable Wine Growing” and the “International Green Apple Gold Award.”

Today, the Hill-Smith family is a big name in the Australian wine industry, owning more than 19 estates throughout the continent.

Louisa Rose is the genius behind Yalumba’s wines, she works with winemaker Kevin Glastonbury to create these masterpieces. Louisa has a long trajectory in the world of wine and has become one of the world’s most respected winemakers. In 1999, she was awarded “Barossa Winemaker of the Year” and in 2004 “International Woman in Wine” by London IWSC. She has been recognized two times as "Winemaker of the Year" by Gourmet Traveler WINE Magazine and by the Australian Society of Viticulture and Oenology, and in 2014 she was awarded “Best Winemaker in Australia."

Kevin Glastonbury, Louisa’s right hand, joined Yalumba in 1999. Ken’s passion to innovate and experiment has been recognized by several wine critics and was recently named “Winemaker of the Year” by Winestate.

his fine Barossa wine is a flagship Shiraz crafted from cherished, ancient vines dating back to 1854, making them among the world's oldest Shiraz plantings. It has been matured in Yalumba coopered oak octaves, which serves as the inspiration behind its name.

Aging: 22 months in 28% new French oak barriques and hogsheads, balance in 1 year and older American octaves, French barriques and hogsheads.

Tasting Notes: 100% Old Vine Shiraz. 
See Critical Reviews for detailed tasting notes.


This blend of Barossa Valley (67%) and Eden Valley fruit hails from five parcels averaging 80 years old, the oldest planted in 1854. Intensely concentrated in hue and muscular flavor. Spicy and mineral to the nose and palate, with glimpses of violets. Its iodine and liquorice-edged black cherry and blueberry flavour is succulent, but still in the grip of the sinewy, charry oak, making for an imposing, slightly austere finish. A powerhouse. ~96 Decanter

Saturated ruby. Heady aromas of ripe dark berries, cherry liqueur, vanilla and incense, with smoky mineral and exotic spice accents building in the glass. Seamless in texture and deeply concentrated, offering palate-staining black and blue fruit, floral pastille and mocha flavors that turn sweeter with air. At once plush and lively, finishing extremely long and smoky, with repeating dark berry and floral notes and velvety tannins. ~96 Vinous

In the rich nose, hints of smoke and leather cling to the mint-scented notes of plum and dark berries. The palate is rich, dense, has a texture of melted milk chocolate, and is infused with layers of ripe fruit. The tannins are as supple as brushed velvet. It is unequivocally Australian in its fullness and depth – but executed with exquisite ease. Once again old vines, some planted in 1854, are the secret. Respect. ~96 Falstaff

There’s a stronger Barossa Valley expression in 2016 with ripe blackberry and dark-plum flavors delivering a very pure, focused fruit impression. Vibrant fruit purity here. The palate has gently grainy tannins and good weight. Fresh, succulent dark berries and an impressive, deep, driving finish. A blend of Barossa Valley 67% and Eden Valley 33 shiraz from very old vines. Drink or hold. ~95 James Suckling 

For a wine named for the 90-liter barrels it was originally matured in, Yalumba's 2016 The Octavius displays relatively restrained oak. This vintage, only 50% of the volume aged in those small octaves for 20 months, with the rest in a mix of barriques and hogsheads (a mix of French and American), all of which were coopered at the winery—but only 28% of which were new. Cedar and vanilla notes accent mixed berries on the nose of this full-bodied effort, which comes from the Barossa (two-thirds) and Eden Valleys (one-third). Rich and velvety on the palate, it adds hints of dried spices, juniper berries and bay leaves on the long finish. The youngest vines were planted in 1951, the oldest in 1854. ~94 Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

The vines for this premium Shiraz date on average to 1936, with some going back to 1854. From French and American staves coopered on site, Octavius offers an evocative and multifaceted nose with everything from currants, licorice and mocha to cedar, bay leaf and clove. The palate is powerful and lean at the moment, with elevated acidity and taut, slightly woody tannins. There’s a nice tang to the fruit. It’s hard to predict how this will age, but the hope is it’s got another decade left in it at least. ~93 Wine Enthusiast

This is blended from vineyard parcels with an average age of 100 years, then aged in octaves – 100-liter barrels coopered from French oak at Yalumba. That small format oak gives the concentrated fruit an immediate richness, a fat wine bursting with cherry ripeness and the umami-tinged bitterness of flower petals. Stay with it and the cherry fruit turns plump and elegant, the wine’s richness shaped by fine tannins. This should age with grace. ~93 WIne & Spirits

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