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2004 Tyrrell's Rufus Stone Heathcote Shiraz
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- Cellar 2 - 3 years (2008-2009)
- ABV 15%
- Closure: Screw Cap
The Tyrrell’s Heathcote Rufus Stone Shiraz does not live up to the standard of previous vintages, nor does it compare well with many of its neighbours. This begs the question why not? The answer is simple. Thorough balanced vineyard management is absolutely necessary in this district, which tends to be unforgiving of poor vineyard practice. Vineyard management is a tricky business here since no two seasons have been the same, inspite of the seven year drought continuing.
Local knowledge of the seasons is imperative, and vineyards which have access to water need to use it judiciously and in a timely manner. Yields must be kept below 3 tonnes per acre, although with water the rich Cambrian earth is certainly capable of producing much more than that. The vines must be carefully balanced, and this means adjusting bud numbers at pruning to adapt to micro vineyard terroir. Stress is common in the district, and once the basal leaves start to yellow and drop off in the growing season trouble starts. The natural ripening process is arrested, with grapes being ripened by shrivel, which contributes to off flavours in the wine.
The new Rufus Stone is a good everyday drinking red, but nothing more than that. It falls short of the quality of previous vintages, and certainly does not have the same cellaring potential. All this is reflected in the price. Buy to drink!
Very deep crimson colour with deep crimson hue. Aroma of violets, spice, blackberry and liquorice allsorts. The palate is much lighter than expected and does not deliver the classic Heathcote flavour profile. On the palate flavours of blackberry, liquorice and spice are evident. Fine grained tannins. Very long spicy aftertaste.
Cellar 2-3 years (2008-2009)