Monday, November 24, 2003

Shiraz Night - November 2003

Our second tasting is probably most notable for the best wine:taster ratio of all time - the three of us opened six bottles of Shiraz and finished just about all of them! Extreme caution should be exercised before relying too much on these ratings...

Note that we did not keep as meticulous notes in those early days (even if we were capable of tasting notes that evening), so here is the ranking of the wines with some short comments:

First: 1999 Delas Freres Crozes-Hermitage Cuvée Tour d'Albon
Second: 1998
Castello Banfi Syrah Sant'Antimo Colvecchio
Third: 1999
Domaine de la Terre Rouge Syrah Sierra Foothills
Fourth: 1999 Paul Jaboulet Aine Vieilles Vignes Crozes Hermitage
Fifth: 2000
Rosemount Shiraz Show Reserve
Sixth: 2000
Caves des Papes Crozes-Hermitage Oratorio

Overall, it is amazing that we held a Shiraz tasting with six wines and only one Australian - clearly an oversight, and demands a retaste. The spread between first and second place was very small, requiring a drunken tiebraker. I have retasted both wines since then and they are fantastic. One observation I would make is that the French wines took much more time to 'open up', something I have noticed on many occasions. I suggest decanting all Bordeaux, Rhone, Madiran, Cahors, and bigger wines from the south of France.

Note that while Parker liked the Delas, Spectator hated it. Spectator loved the Banfi, while Parker never rates the Banfi wines.

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