Shiraz and Grenache

New Release Tasting

Reviewed: 30 March 2013

The highlight of this tasting was not the smart shiraz on display, but a pair of wines made from straight grenache. The Angove was fresh, succulent and juicy, whilst the Patritti was a powerhouse of old vines fruit. Different in style, but both most worthy of your attention.


Grenache and Blends

Patritti – Grenache – Section 181 – 2011 (18+). Fragrant, perfumed nose that is the trademark of grenache. Cherry, plum and red berries caress the nose, with subtle spice and cedary oak adding depth and complexity. The palate is flooded with masses of ripe fruit, is fresh, and is totally delicious. The tannins and oak add depth to the fruit rather than dominate it. After a couple of days in the bottle, this was even better, with superb, old bush vine fruit on display. A superb wine. ($28 ex-winery and sealed with a cork).

Angove – Grenache – Alternatus – 2012 (17.5+). Fabulous youthful fruit, and very new-world compared to the Chalk Board. On the nose, this has dense, ripe fruit over sweet oak characters. This is quite a big wine that has bucket loads of juicy ripe fruit over supple oak and fine tannins. Good length, with the flavour profile evolving to blackberry and spice. A smart wine that needs time to really come together. Best in 3- 5 years, but an excellent drink now with air.

Chalk Board – Grenache/Shiraz – Cotes du Rhone – 2011 (17). Light and fresh fruit that is bright and succulent, with a core of souring, black cherry characters. Whilst the fine tannins are noticeable, this is a fruit driven style that has seen little or no oak. Would suit food well and may even improve for a few years in bottle. (Vintage Cellars).

Shingleback – Grenache/Shiraz/Mouvedre – Red Knot – 2012 (17). Plump, ripe, supple and delicious. Not overly complex, but with good quality fruit, the finish is defined by fine tannins and acid, making this an excellent food wine.


Leeuwin Estate – Shiraz – Art Series – 2010 (18). Much cooler style here, with peppery, spicy fruit and refined, fine tannins. The fruit quality is excellent, as is the winemaking. The oak use is particularly note-worthy as it complements the style perfectly without imparting a flavour profile of its own. A refined wine that will be at its best after 2020.

Chalk Board – Shiraz – 2010 (17.5). Quite a serious wine that is tight, taut and closed. The fruit is fine and of good quality, while the winemaking matches the weight of the fruit very well. Supple, fine grained oak complements the fruit. Opens to show lovely red fruits and a touch of cinnamon spice. The chewy and dense finish suggests some time in bottle will be of benefit. Value from Vintage Cellars.

Patritti – Shiraz – Lot Three – 2010 (18). Masses of rich McLaren Vale (older vine) fruit on display here. There is ripe, plump fruit on the nose which is the main focus here, with the winemaking just adding support in the background. The finish is quite textured, though the silky tannins are very fine and add a drying savoury edge to the palate. An enjoyable wine that is well suited to food, though it will benefit from time in the cellar. It was interesting to see distinct espresso coffee characters develop on both the nose and the palate. $28 from the cellar door.

N.B.The espresso characters were even more obvious on Patritti’s top of the range JPB shiraz (Not reviewed here).