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2001 Sanguine Estate Heathcote Shiraz
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- Cellar 4 - 5 years (2006-2007)
- ABV 14.5%
- Closure: Cork
The May edition of Vintage Direct has taken a lot longer to come together than previous editions. We have tasted hundreds of wines, many of which have been disappointing, and without a severe editing process there would be much ordinary drinking. Vintage Direct is only published when we are confident that we have found wines of exceptional quality and value for money. All wines that we access are evaluated by using the Wine Spider system - visit www.winespider.com to view the process. The ratings are transparent, and able to be cross checked using the system. The 2001 vintage has produced some very special Shiraz, particularly from McLaren Vale, Barossa Valley and Heathcote. The 2002 vintage, although far from uniform, produced spectacular Shiraz from the same areas. The quality of the fruit is textbook perfect, and no one in living memory can recall a greater result. The production from 2002 is small, with yields down as much as 50% in some vineyards. This means that prices for super premium wines will inevitably increase. This month?s front cover is the 2001 Sanguine Estate Heathcote Shiraz. Heathcote is rapidly emerging as the Coonawarra of Victoria, as winemakers realise the enormous potential for Shiraz, grown on ancient Cambrian soils. Sanguine Estate is owned by Tony Hunter and his family, who have an obsession to be the best. The vineyard crops between 1 to 1.7 tonnes per acre, minuscule yields, producing wines of remarkable flavour with extraordinary colour and balance. The vines are grown on 500 million year old Cambrian soils. Viticultural management is critical in this area, which has experienced its 5th consecutive year of drought. Rainfall at critical times of a vines life is essential, and when it does not come, very careful use of supplementary water is required, otherwise the vines go into stress and produce inferior fruit. The 2001 Sanguine Estate Shiraz is a wonderful follow up to the 2000 release, which sold out in a matter of days. International demand for super premium Australian wines is pushing up prices. In the ?good ol days? there was a bottle of great wine for every wine lover who wanted it. Today, there are probably 20-30 people after the same bottle. The determination of the Hunter family to produce extraordinary wine, coupled with the winemaking talents of Peter Dredge & Matt Hunter will ensure that Sanguine Estate firmly establishes itself as one of Australia?s great wines, and a highly prized collectable.
AN OUTSTANDING HEATHCOTE SHIRAZ DESTINED FOR FUTURE INTERNATIONAL CULT STATUS.
Tasting Note: An outstanding follow up to the inaugural 2000 vintage. Totally black colour - with black crimson hue. This is the hallmark of great Heathcote Shiraz, and indicative of an intense flavour profile. Intense aroma of blackberry and black pepper over a spicy background. The palate delivers everything that is expected. Intense, concentrated blackberry and black pepper flavour over a layer of liquorice and cedar. Totally mouthfilling. Perfect balance, fine firmish tannins, followed by very long aftertaste of blackcurrant, black pepper and spice. An outstanding example of Heathcote Shiraz.
Cellar 4-5 years. (2006-2007)
The wine has now arrived and since our last review has blossomed superbly. We have followed the evolution of this wine from cask to pre-bottling, post-bottling up until now, after several weeks of bottle maturation. By employing the Winespider technique of wine evaluation we have been able to visually track the wines development and interpret whether it is growing or contracting over a given period of time. In this case, the 2001 Sanguine Shiraz is even more impressive than our last review, little more than one month ago. Our new notes read as follows:
Totally opaque black crimson colour with black crimson hue. The aroma has blossomed and displays that classic Heathcote nose that is so sought after. Initial lifted notes of liquorice, blackpepper and blueberry are followed by a stronger layer of blackpepper as an end note. The palate has also filled out with more complexity now evident. Totally mouthfilling. Flavours of spice, blackpepper, plum and liquorice with the blackpepper component finally vanquishing the entire palate. Perfectly balanced, fine grained tannins followed by an exceptionally long spice, liquorice and blackpepper aftertaste. A wonderful evolution that will continue over the next 4-5 years. (2006-2007)
Click here to read more about the Heathcote wine region.