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2010 Clarendon Hills Romas Grenache
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- Cellar 7 - 9 years (2020-2022)
- ABV 14.5%
- Closure: Cork
Many Australians remain oblivious to the superb Reds that come out of a collection of old vine vineyards under the 'Clarendon Hills' label. Miniscule output and premium price tags are secondary to this vineyard's apparent alienation, which is actually a self-imposed predicament that says more about owner winemaker, Roman Bratasiuk, a former biochemist for the Australian government.
"Australians don't know what to do with my wines" he claims, "because they don't taste like everyone else's" which equates to approximately 98% of annual production being exported. Bratasiuk's highly individualistic philosophy is certainly reflected in his wines which draw inspiration from the Classed Growths of Bordeaux and the great Shiraz and Grenache wines of the Rhone Valley. Also notable is a complete absence of American oak. "My Syrahs are not typically Australian; they are not over-laden with American oak and aren't jammy...In McLaren Vale there are many winemakers with academic degrees who are making recipe wines with American oak like those made by everyone else. I make wine intuitively, by instinct and imagination, not with a textbook."
Robert Parker describes Bratasuik as "...one of planet earth's greatest winemakers." He has also been described as brash, even arrogant. Regardless of one's attitude towards the man, there is no denying the extraordinary achievement that Clarendon Hills is. His wines possess an uncanny and universal ability to incite superlatives. Since the late 1990's we've reviewed successive collections of these wines, frequently giving them our highest recommendation.
Opaque black dark crimson red colour with dark crimson red hue. The nose opens with intense dark raspberry top notes that fill the nostrils followed by some dark plum and liquorice scents with confectionary and light spice end notes. Decadently rich and powerful, ripe fruit flavours of dark raspberry and dark plum explode onto the palate followed by some liquorice, confectionary, subtle dried meats and spice. Firm solid tannins take on a velvet like appearance beneath the wealth of succulent fruit. Opulent mouthfeel with an exceptionally long imposing finish of dark raspberry, dark plum, subtle liquorice, confectionary and spice.
Cellar 6-8 years (2020-2022).