I’ve been really impressed with the various Grampians Shirazes tasted of late – consistency of style, distinctiveness of character, at all price points. No wonder it is such a renowned region for this variety, though arguably lower in profile than it deserves. Swings and roundabouts, though; as attention shifts to cooler climate expressions of Shiraz, the role of regions like the Grampians may end up being disproportionately significant.
There’s more than a hint of Gimblett Gravels Syrah in this wine’s nose, though here the aroma is not so aggressively spiced/floral as some from Hawkes Bay. Still, there’s definitely a shake of potpourri within this complex aroma profile of pepper, blueberries and mushroom. Although it’s almost ten years old, it remains strikingly primary, with only some mushroom or leather notes to betray almost ten years of bottle age. I can only imagine it as a young wine. Overall, very aromatic, rich and exotic.
In the mouth, an intense punch of fruit flavour. Again surprisingly primary, this wine is resolutely alive on the tongue, an impression to which all its elements contribute. The fruit is dark and concentrated, and frankly inseparable from the array of spice notes also present. The acid is quite firm, though certainly not dominant, ditto the tannins; there’s some of the clean flow of an older red wine, but it’s early days. What I like most here is an easygoing, almost casual, elegance. This isn’t some obsessive study in high style (though it’s extremely stylish). Rather, it drapes effortlessly and hence gives off a vibe of natural vitality. All of which adds up to a wine that is all quality but that is so easy to drink it’s almost quaffable. The finish is especially long and fine, laden with spice and hints of cedar oak.
A delicious, benchmark Shiraz that is just starting to show some positive signs of age. Along with the 2004 Clayfield
, this would be my favourite amongst recently tasted Grampians Shiraz wines.
Mount Langi Ghiran