Reviewed: 4th January 2014
Shingleback – Shiraz – D Block Reserve – 2010 (18). Fresh and taut, with a degree of power that belies the elegance and balance of the mid-weight fruit. Opens to show the full spectrum of ripe shiraz characters including plum, mocha, redcurrant and lovely, spice undertones. The quality fruit has absorbed the oak, leaving palate texture and just a hint of cedar and vanilla on the back palate. Savoury, very young and all in place, but requires time to blossom. A restrained and delicate McLaren Vale shiraz. (RRP $60). I was in two minds as to whether to review this wine as it is not a typical example of McLaren Vale shiraz. That said, the sheer quality of the fruit won out!
Willow Bridge – Shiraz – Gravel Pit – 2012 (18). I like this. There is a dense vein of chocolaty fruit that runs from the nose right through to the finish on the palate. Rounded and almost plump, yet the fine acid/tannin balance keeps the whole thing in check. The slightly chewy texture adds appeal. Very good now, but will be better in 5 – 10 years. (RRP $30).
Singlefile – Shiraz – 2011 (18). A very dense wine, however this needs time to open up. Well rounded and balanced, with floral fruit highlights. Supple, but with firm acid and fine tannins to close. Another superb wine from this Great Southern producer. ($37 RRP).
Redbank – Shiraz – The Anvil – 2009 (17.9). The nose on this wine stands out for its vibrant, spicy fruit. Think white pepper, red fruits and spice. The palate is firm and tight, though there is a core of mulberry that builds with air. The sour cherry acidity and firm tannins keep the finish fresh. A stylish/sophisticated wine that needs time to evolve. (RRP $52).
Willow Bridge – Shiraz – Dragonfly – 2012 (17.8). A dense wine that needs a little air to express itself. Powerful, high quality fruit that is firm, textured, chewy and quite closed initially. Impressive length and balance, while the oak has been handled superbly. A brilliant wine for $17!
Devils Lair – Shiraz – Fifth Leg – 2012 (17.7). Fragrant, spicy and medium-bodied (but not overly dense). The palate has chocolate, with citrus highlights, while the tannins are fine and will soften with time. A youthful, elegant wine, that should be quite a bargain.
Cimicky – Shiraz – Trumps – 2012 (17.5). Chocolaty, sweet fruit, with decent intensity and depth. This is quite silky and supple, yet there is a seam of souring acidity and fine tannins that adds life. Builds spicy/savoury notes and has a subtle, vanillin oak lift on the finish. Another good wine from this underrated producer. (RRP = $22).
De Bortoli – Shiraz/Cabernet/Merlot – La Bossa – 2011 (16.9). Plum, cinnamon, vanilla and white pepper on the nose. Chewy, textured and long, with souring acid, delicious. Fruit-driven, easy-drinking wine that is great value.
Cross Stitch – Shiraz/Cabernet Sauvignon – 2012 (16.9). Chewy wine with mocha notes and firm tannins. The oak is apparent though not intrusive. A more traditional Australian red for those who like a big red.