A Wine Maker’s Near-Weekly Guide To $15 Wines – A Shiraz From Victoria, Australia

Over the years we have done many Australian wines, probably including some from the southeastern region of Victoria best known for fortified “sticky” wines that we have not tasted. Victoria’s oldest family owned winery and vineyard, Tahbilk, was established in 1860 in the Nacambie Lakes region, some 120 kilometers (about 80 miles) north of Melbourne. They own about 200 hectares (500 acres) on the Golbourn river. Tabilk means place of many waterholes in the native language. They do interesting French whites, Marsanne, Roussanne, and Viognier. I would love to taste their “1927 Vines” Marsanne, unavailable in my area, perhaps because to protect the name it isn’t released every year. Check out their website for information on Eco Trails Walks and Cruises. The companion wine is a Kosher Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon costing considerably less, especially on the Internet.

OUR WINE REVIEW POLICY All wines that we taste and review are purchased at the full retail price.

Wine Reviewed Tahbilk Shiraz 2006, 14.0% alcohol about $15.

We can start by quoting the marketing materials. “Tasting Note: With a deep garnet color, the 2006 Shiraz is a little funky / gamey to begin, with a core of ripe blackberries, earth, and cinnamon stick. Medium to full-bodied with a medium to high level of fine tannins and medium to high acid, it is superbly balanced by concentrated fruit and gives a long spicy finish. Approachable now, this wine should be delicious to 2018+. Score – 92. (Lisa Perotti-Brown, MW, at the Robert Parker website, June 2010.) ” And now for my review.

At the first sips this wine was rather sweet. It was very long and round. And it packed a punch. The initial meal centered on kube, ground beef in ground bulgar jackets in a sour sauce brimming with kale. The Shiraz’s acidity got higher. There was lots of dark fruit and the libation was very round. I added lots of Louisiana hot sauce. The wine was still long and dark but by no means improved. When paired with the side salad that was composed of broccoli shoots, tomatoes, cucumbers, carrots, and red onions this drink remained long but became unbalanced, offering too much acidity.

The next meal was a box of Baked Ziti Siciliano that I covered with grated Parmesan cheese. Now this Australian was elegant and lightly chewy. It had good length and was multilayered. A little bit went a long way. Fresh strawberries for dessert rendered this wine less powerful but I still sensed some chocolate.

My final meal started with a so-called pizza appetizer consisting of cabbage, carrots, and tomato paste in puff pastry. In response the wine was dark, chewy, and balanced. Then came the main dish, slow cooked beef stew. In response to dark cherries it was very long. This wine was mellow. The accompanying potatoes sweetened the wine but everything else remained the same. A generous portion Louisiana hot sauce on the meat had no effect on the Syrah.

Final verdict. I would buy this wine again. But it’s definitely not a 92, whatever that means.

Levi Reiss authored or co-authored ten computer and Internet books, but prefers drinking fine wine with the right foods and people. He teaches computers at an Ontario French-language community college. His global wine website www.theworldwidewine.com features a weekly review of $10 wines. Visit his Italian travel website www.travelitalytravel.com

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Comments are closed.