The Melissa’s Paddock Syrah serves as an apotheosis of elegance meshed with force, dichotomously ethereal in its delivery and pepper-grind length. Impressively savoury. Uncannily fresh and effortless. Smoked meat, blueberry, soaring violet scents and a Iithe yet sumptuous ferrous texture.
And it’s a good ‘un if $200-odd is in your wheelhouse. It’s an architectural red of lithe tannin, black-and-red cherry fruit character, white pepper spice and some light gamey characters. The flow is even, just on medium weight, bound in those graphite-licked tannins and seasoned with a dash of cinnamon oak. The finish is stellar, mouth-watering with tension and light, fine tannin chew. Stellar wine.
95 points, The Wine Front (July 2019)
Fruit was picked in 10 lots spanning three weeks from Maroondah Highway’s more iron-flecked parcels. This is denser and more closed than the estate wine, with ripe but ruffled tannins which still clasp the dark, brooding blackberry and plum fruit. Spicy pimento and black pepper then earthier, granitic notes unfurl with time in the glass. It's vinified similarly to the Estate Syrah, but is aged exclusively in 500l French oak puncheons, 40% new, for 12 months.
94 points, Sarah Ahmed, Decanter (July 2018)
A fragrant, brambly, redder -fruited style that has a swathe of deeply integrated oak spice. The palate is fleshy and round, quite creamy and dense with smooth, even tannins. Carries well.
93 points, JamesSuckling.com (June 2019)
The 2015 Melissa's Paddock Syrah was aged in 40% new French oak, but it manages to retain a delightful peppery edge to its nose, backed by layers of plummy fruit and subtle barrel char. It's medium to full-bodied, framed by supple tannins that turn just a bit dusty on the long, spice-driven finish. It strikes a fine balance between fruity and savory notes, tying those elements together in a soft, fine web of tannin, which makes for a lovely expression of Yarra Valley Syrah.
93 points, Wine Advocate (May 2020)
Yarra ValleyThe Yarra Valley was first planted by the Ryrie brothers who explored a way through the Snowy Mountains to the Yarra Valley, planting grapes in 1838 just three years after the foundation of Melbourne. A wine industry (developed by Swiss Settlers particularly Hubert de Castella and Baron Guillaume de Pury in the 1850s) thrived during the gold rush era and heyday of the 19th century. However, the end of the gold rush brought the wine industry into decline and it was not until the 1970’s that the modern wine industry started up again. The region is probably Australia’s best-known cool-climate area, yet it is really a patchwork of meso-climates. This varied topography creates an incredible set of variables. Vineyards are planted on elevations of 50 to 400m on varying aspects and management programmes. The more exposed sites are subject to severe spring frosts and winds. Overall, the area experiences a relatively high rainfall pattern and is known for its temperature extremes during ripening. Site selection is crucial, with the best vineyards often located where the original vines were once planted, generally on sandy clay loams and gravels. The Yarra Valley is well known for high quality Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Blends with Shiraz increasingly garnering attention. Sparkling wine production is also extremely important, with many of Australia’s finest examples produced in the region.