See previous note in April this year when we had lunch at Penfolds HQ at Magill Estate Adelaide. I bought 2 bottles after the experience of having one at lunch. Perfectly mature from Penfolds Cellars. This had savoury meaty pan juices amongst the Choc Malt Plum DNA of many Penfolds reds. Even though from Coonawarra - much cooler than Barossa - this was ripe from the 1998 vintage and had a pruney note. This gives one the idea of the longevity of all Penfolds Cuvées. Simply amazing at 23 years and could go on for 5 plus more years. Will keep the last one for several more years if I have the willpower. — 10 days ago
A favorite restaurant just added this to their collection and our first time trying it. Light and fruitful but not jammy. They served it slightly chilled- loved it. — 5 days ago
This was a blast from the old Grateful Palate days; one of those producers, in that somewhat infamous book, that flew under the radar. Rob Gibson, a self described “dirt man”, made his name at Penfolds where he spent over two decades, which culminated with him leading the viticultural team that identified the best Shiraz for Grange. With his experience and knowledge, he has a knack for knowing where all the best sites are and it’s from these vines that his Old Vine Collection are made. This particular bottling uses fruit from some of the oldest Shiraz vines in Australia, planted in the 1860’s. Heck, even the “young” vines were planted in 1910! It’s almost needless to say that annual production is minuscule with only about 6 barrels made each year.
Popped and poured; consumed over two hours. The wine pours a deep ruby with medium+ viscosity and loads of sediment. On the nose, medium+ intensity with soft blue fruits, purple flowers, black pepper, sweet pipe tobacco, bacon fat, baking spices, and just a touch of eucalyptus. On the palate, there’s a bounty of blue and red fruits, some of them dried. There’s also blueberry pie, leather, tobacco, and baking spice. Tannin comes across medium and well integrated at this point. The acid is medium+ and gives the fruit the freshness and lift it needs. The finish is long, rich and velvety in texture. This is what I want out of an Australian Shiraz. I have two more bottles that I’m in no particular rush to drink but these are fabulous now and should be for at least another 5-10 years. — 20 days ago
Mainly black and red fruits with a little licorice with an earthy chalky hint on the nose, black fruit mainly with an earthy finish on the palate. — a day ago
Savoury plum on the nose which comes through on the medium weight palate with savoury plum blue fruits, and mineral at the same time. Had that trademark Heathcote earthiness and finishes with Heathcote dirt. Love Heathcote when it is medium weight and not a blockbuster. — 8 days ago
The final wine at the Downs Club Filipino Dinner on Wednesday night - the mystery wine. This was a rich full bodied red from Coonawarra ( atypical for most Shiraz from this region) and I incorrectly picked McLaren Vale. This had a closed latent brooding nose and should have had a longer decant I feel. Ripe black fruits with some liquorice and plenty of tannin. This has a long way to go to achieve some nuance and detail. A whopper for a Coonawarra Shiraz. — 18 days ago
With ripe candied black fruits, steeped tea, herbal spices, cured meat, dark chocolate, and forest floor, the nose seems to evolved a bit from a year ago. Not much has changed on the palate. Probably needs another 3-4 years to enter its prime drinking window, but irresistible now.
— 18 days ago
Nothing to add much to my notes of 67 weeks ago except to say it is not showing as much oak now as it was then. Black pepper notes. As written before I feel Margaret River is best suited to Cabernet but if you are going to grow Shiraz it needs to be in the south where Cape Mentelle and Voyager are situated. Not so much in Wilyabrup in the north of Margaret River. — 22 days ago