Leading with dark, spiced fruit and hints of new leather, soy and dark chocolate, this Shiraz has flashes of brightness on the palate, but is firm, dense and brooding, begging for time in the cellar.
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Shiraz has become the leading variety of the Canberra District, and our confidence in its future at Mount Majura Vineyard had grown so much that we expanded our plantings by grafting, back in 2004. These vines first contributed to the blend with the 2007 vintage, and include clones Best’s Old Block (fragrant, quite mineral) and 1127 (richer, more chocolatey tannins) along with the original planting (PT23, blackberry and pepper).
The 2015-2016 season was our warmest to date (as measured by Growing Degree Days), illustrating the ongoing effect of global warming. Very hot weather in early Spring ensured that the season was early throughout, with the commencement of harvest (5th Feb for sparkling base) being another record. The season was generally benign, with a warm stretch of weather from mid-February to mid-March bringing many varieties to ripeness at a rapid rate. Irrigation during this time was important to most blocks, and ensured that good yields of high quality fruit were harvested. 2016 would be considered a standout vintage for us if it weren’t slightly shaded by 2015, with the best of the two depending on variety.
Hand picked 6 March 2016, at an average of 13.8Bé and fermented in open vats with hand plunging, leaving 25% as whole bunches. Matured in French oak barriques (20% new), lightly fined and filtered. Bottled January 2017, 286 dozen made. Alcohol 14.0% by volume. Vegan friendly?: No (fined with gelatin).
Drink now to 2031.
The first shiraz vintage (2002) was under cork, screwcap clearly gives the wines longer life. Wines were tasted from the winery museum. If your cellaring conditions are less than ideal, consider reducing the expected life of the wine. Tasted May 2018.
|Vintage||Tasting Notes||Drink Until||Rating|
|2015||Purple-red. Wonderfully aromatic and complex with pepper, musky, creamy blackberry, spicy fruit and iodine. Lush dark fruits on the palate, grainy long tannin. Gorgeous. Similarities to ’05 and ’09.||2038||Outstanding|
|2014||Deep medium red. Dried herbs and restrained fruit. Taut, earthy and a little rustic.||2026||Very good|
|2013||Very deep purple-red. Rich fruitcake, ripe aromas with soy and game. Big and full and overall a bit boofy. Similarities to 2008.||2031||Excellent|
|2012||Deep purple-red. Has lost some fruit and dusty pyrazine/vegetal character now dominates. Distinctive and enjoyable but likely to polarise.||2023||Very good|
|2011||Good deep red. Some gaminess at first but opening to pepper, red fruits and herbs, complex and interesting. Perhaps a touch of hardness, but overall complex and lovely with very good length.||2028||Excellent|
|2010||Medium red. Intense aromas of blackcurrant and smoky, dusty spice. Red berries, black pastille and plum on the palate, bright and clear. Some good development, but lots of future.||2030||Excellent|
|2009||Deep black-red. Intense and complex with a spiced fruit, dusty leather and earth. Loads of interest, juicy, fine and plush, coiled and taut but full. A silky favourite.||2030||Outstanding|
|2008||Deep dark red. A dense and powerful wine with ripe dark fruit and hints of game. Plush and rich with freshness and youth.||2028||Excellent|
|2007||Medium red with slight brick edge. Sweet fruit with dried herbs and woodspice, some oak still visible. The palate is slightly firm.||2023||Excellent|
|2006||Deep red with slight brick edges. Still has good fruit but also quite savoury and vegetal character. Fresh fruit on the palate but sandy and somewhat astringent.||2021||Good|
|2005||Dark black/red. Lots of aromatic intensity and developed complexity with blackcurrant, damp earth, smoky undergrowth, roast meat. Wonderful chewy, grippy, grainy texture. A gorgeous mature wine to some, slightly too savoury for others.||2023||Outstanding|
|2004||Dark black/red. Aromatic and attractive with sweet, spiced ripe fruit, woodspice, cigar box, musky blueberry, chocolate and vanilla. Soft sweet fruit, plush and fine, the finish firmish and this is the only reservation.||2025||Excellent|
|2003||Dense black/red. Lots of dark primary fruit still, very ripe with earth, integrated oak, raspberry, musky, marzipan and toast. Still youthful, but somewhat firm and austere.||2028||Very good|
|2002||Red/brick colour. Intense aromas of dusty leather, red fruit, liquorice, earth and mulberry. Fully mature but attractive. Soft and plush with sweet fruit, fine tannins and lovely balance. A really lovely, complex old red.||Now||Very good|