Thursday, August 18, 2011

Review: **** $ Cameron Hughes Lot 78 Shiraz, Barossa Valley, Australia, 2006 - BEST VALUE

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Original Tasting and Review, February, 2010; updated review, August, 2011:

By way of background: Cameron Hughes Lot 78 Shiraz, Barossa Valley, Australia, is finished at 15% alcohol for this 2006 vintage.

In the glass: Cameron Hughes Lot 78 Shiraz shows as opaque purple in the glass, opaque within 1/4 inch of the edge.

On the nose: Poured cool and swirled vigorously, this Barossa shiraz shows bold, deep fruit and significant oak.  

On the palate: The first element on the palate is deep, spicy shiraz fruit on the mid-palate, lifting to the roof of your mouth with some apparent acids.  The cedar aromas settle things down again, with the alcohol bringing lasting flavors across to your cheeks. 

And the wrap-up: The finish is solid and long-lasting, driven by alcohol and acids, but buttressed by the solid fruit.

In summary: Overall, a bold new world experience. Rates three stars stars on the five-star Spirit of Wine scale, with a plus for intensity and friendliness.  Rates a best buy based on close-out pricing at the retailer.

Following a two-day decant under vacuum in a partially-filled bottle: The aromas are bold and playful now, more inky than oaky.  The acids have settled to a more mineral-quality now on the palate, raising this to a complete, balanced experience, and generating a four star rating.  Awesome value.

Updated review, a year and a half later:  Now the Cameron Hughes line is nearing lot number 200, so this one dates from the earlier part of the line, now five years from vintage date.  Consistent color.  On the nose, the fruit remains dark and bold, but the oak is less immediately apparent.  The palate is bold and soft now, with purple candy fruit and some chocolate.  Less cedar.  Ready to drink up now. Remains a best value.  Following long decant, full day kept cool in partially filled bottle:  Soft and full on the nose.  Very consistent and satisfying on the palate.

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1 comment:

  1. Thank for such a thorough and complete review. We found that time has done nothing but improved this wine.


    Jake W.
    Cameron Hughes Wine