While working at Rockford Wines in 1994, David Powell discovered and began to clean up a few parcels of old, dry-grown vines. Near lifeless, he slowly nurtured them back to health and was rewarded when a couple of the plots began producing enough fruit that he could start experimenting with his own ideas on wine production.

Starting in 1995, David was able to harvest and crush a total of three tonnes of grapes, carefully fermenting them in his make-shift winery, a simple shed on his 12-hectare Marananga property. The winery was named “Torbreck” after the forest in Scotland where Powell had previously worked as a lumberjack, with the resulting wine christened “RunRig”. From this point on David’s ambition and determination was clear. He departed Rockford and began securing further contracts for the supply of fruit from some of the oldest Shiraz vineyards in the world.

Since that first vintage, RunRig has received an unprecedented string of ratings from The Wine Advocate, with no vintage scoring less than 95 points, and no fewer than seven vintages of RunRig achieving a score of 99 points.

Torbreck’s focus is on the classic Barossa Valley grape varieties of Shiraz, Grenache and Mataro (Mourvèdre) and the style has always been driven by Powell's love for and respect of the great wines of France’s Rhône Valley.

Although initially receiving acclaim for its powerful yet fresh red wines, Torbreck has recently garnered attention for its white wines as well. These are produced from the Viognier, Marsanne and Roussanne vines planted in the estate's Descendent Vineyard. Although the grapes from these vines were initially intended to be used solely as blending material in the high-end reds they are now earning recognition on their own.

One of the underlying factors of Torbreck’s success is the extreme production standards that David enforces within the vineyard. Complete control of the entire winemaking process is maintained by David and only fruit from the very best vineyards in the Barossa Valley - mainly from the area’s oldest and most precious vines – is used. The overwhelming majority of these vines are dry-grown and nearly all of them are between 100 and 165 years old. Each bunch of grapes is tended and harvested by hand.

Ultimately these wines have that inexplicable combination of power, intensity, complexity and great finesse about them, all while managing to remain extraordinarily fresh tasting. All of the wines are bottled with minimal fining and filtration, in order to help maintain each cuvée’s sense of place and authenticity. The current, complete range now stands at 19 different, highly-rated cuvées. .
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