I hope someone serves this to me in 15 year’s time, because I’d love to see how it turns out. Right now it looks a little caricatured, with warm alcohol and a blast of mint matched to thick, bold, soupy plums and tar, the texture silken and the amount of fruit quite substantial. It’s a grunty wine, but it’s also quite impeccable. The tannins are ripe and fine, the flavour full, the texture soft. My hesitation is based around the fact that it also seems simple and warm, but time in the bottle may well fix that. Drink: 2012-2019. 91 points, Wine Front (1/2007).
Coonawarra is supposed to be Cabernet country, but Shiraz can do well there too. This is a full-bodied, rich wine that manages to be hugely concentrated yet not overly heavy. Leathery, meaty, bacony notes are layered over plummy fruit, while berry notes emerge on the finish, dusted in coffee and cocoa. Drink to 2020. 92 points, Joe Czerwinski (1/2008).
Kym Tolley selects this wine from a section of his Cottage block, where the small berries provide for the top Shiraz in his range. This full, rich red is much more than just a fruit monster. It’s silken and complex, with red spice to the sunny black fruit. An earthy savour develops with air – suited to decanting now with thick-cut lamb chops. 92 points, Wine & Spirits (2/2008).
The 2004 Shiraz Special Select raises the bar considerably. It was barrel-fermented in 100% new oak, mostly American. It reveals an alluring bouquet of cedar, earth, pencil lead, smoked meat and game, licorice, blueberry, and blackberry. Full-bodied, it is still tightly wound but very well-balanced. It is full-flavoured, spicy, and succulent with 6-8 years of aging potential. It should drink well through 2024. 91+ points, Jay Miller (10/2007).
CoonawarraThe first vines were planted in Coonawarra by John Riddoch in 1890, however it was not until the renewed interest in table wine production in the 1950's that Coonawarra was brought into the limelight. Located almost 380 km southeast of Adelaide, Coonawarra is today one of the most famous red wine regions in Australia. Its weathered limestone terra rossa soils, avaibility of water and relatively cool maritime climate make it a unique viticultural region. Extremely flat and unprotected, Coonawarra is exposed both to the swinging influences of the cool Great Southern Ocean and hot, dry northerly winds. Spring frosts also pose a major threat with the potential to wipe out entire crops. Mechanical harvesting is widely employed in the region although smaller producers prefer to tend their vines by hand. Coonawarra is best known for classically-styled Cabernet Sauvignon, although in good years, Shiraz from the region is also very compelling.