Thursday, June 20, 2013

Updated Review and Rating: *** $$ Cameron Hughes Lot 41 Shiraz, McLaren Vale, Australia

Original Review, February, 2008:
This is part of a series of Cameron Hughes wines. This line was established as a series of "odd-lot" values, presumably with high value/cost ratios. Each lot is one-off, with no assurance of future availability.

So let's examine this McLaren Vale shiraz...

In the glass, Cameron Hughes Lot 41 Shiraz shows deep red in the glass, almost opaque in the center. Aroma is bold, chocolate-covered cherries - a classic deep McLaren Vale shiraz. Very nice and inviting.

On the palate, a fruity bright, frontal mid-palate pepper and sweetness comes to the fore. Light tannins and acids then bring the finish along. A black pepper comes through also in the finish. Medium-weight to the taste, not quite as deep and bold as the aroma suggests. I'll try decanting, but right now I'm leaning towards just two stars, with a plus for the inviting aromatic robe.
...

After some airing, and with a meal of pesto-encrusted chicken, I found the Lot 41 opening to deep red cherry plus pepper flavors, nicely complimenting the meal. I'll give it three stars out of five.
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Updated review, over five years later, now eight years from vintage date, July, 2013:  Medium red in the glass, now showing brick highlights.  Nose shows black pepper and some almost-oxidized light fruit.  The palate delivers flavorful black pepper with a sweet, yet light, ripe blackberry surround.  Full, fresh, clean, with the distinctive pepper.  A solid three stars, but don't cellar any longer.

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