Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Review and Rating: **** S.C. Pannell Shiraz / Grenache, 2004, McLaren Vale, Australia

Winemaker Stephen Pannell may be best known for his involvement in Hardy's McLaren Vale reds. This is his own Rhone-styled red, a blend of shiraz/grenache.

It is dark magenta, almost opaque in the glass. Aromas are rich and juicy with luscious blackberry and smooth, sweet oak.

On the palate, big, broad, sweet layers of rich fruit are the first thing you notice. Grenache lends a spicy note to the round flavors. A rich lasting finish wraps up the outstanding experience. Four stars out of five.

Robert Parker was quite a fan of this too, awarding a range of 93-95 points, and writing in the Wine Advocate, "The 2004 Shiraz/Grenache (55% Shiraz from 90-year-old vines and 45% Grenache from 60-year-old vines) was aged 14 months in various-sized barrels of French oak (30% new). The beautiful bouquet offers up scents of acacia flowers, blueberries, raspberries, and spicy oak. A wine of considerable elegance and purity with a broad, expansive texture, tremendous depth, and fabulous precision, this knock-out effort should drink well for 7-8 years."

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