Mataro, Grenache, Shiraz, Carignan, Cinsault; why not?
Some performances consist of one idea. Sometimes this is enough to carry the weight of the show; it all depends on the strength of the idea and how well the audience connects with it. And so it is with this wine. It says one thing clearly and consistently, which may be the most wonderful thing if you like what it has to say.
The nose is dense and savoury, a strongly liquerous character instantly emerging from the glass, speaking of dark berries and darker oak, shadowy corners and even shadowier conversations. I see dark tones each time I smell this wine; it’s moody if somewhat monochromatic and blunt. The blend seems beautifully executed in terms of coherence.
The palate is of a piece with the nose, stylistically. It strikes a dense, flavoursome note immediately on entry, the extra dimension here being textural, driven mostly by a streak of acid that sits a little uneasily alongside the fruit’s density of flavour. More dark berry liqueur and velvety plushness on the middle palate, though an element of hardness starts to creep in gradually, perhaps related to the character of the oak. Things get progressively more savoury as the line progresses, before an oak-driven finish of vanilla curls and ice cream rounds things off.
There’s a lot in here by way of flavour and interest, but at the same time I am left wishing for some light and shade, a bit of nuance, less emphatic a statement. Sometimes, less certainty can be charming.