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2018 Penny’s Hill Cracking Black Shiraz
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- Cellar Drink Now - 8 years (2021-2029)
- ABV 14.5%
- Closure: Stelvin
The most interesting aspect of Penny’s Hill Malpas Road vineyard is a peculiar characteristic of the soil from which this wine's namesake is derived, due to the cracking black 'bay of biscay' soils. Since the site was planted in 1991, viticulturists have observed come summer, preceding vintage, that fissures occur as the black soil dries up. It literally cracks apart, severing any surplus root structure in the vine; a process which naturally lessens vine vigour and enhances fruit quality.
To best reflect the variations in terroir across the vineyards and ensure that the fruit is picked at optimal levels of physiological ripeness, harvest of individual parcels occurs on different days. Maturation takes place in French oak barrels; approximately 15% new for a period of 16 months.
Magnificent dense inky black core with a very deep dark purple black hue. Heady scents of blackberry, liquorice and black cherry are married to lightly toasted vanillin oak, hints of graphite and blackpepper. Rich blackberry, liquorice and dark plum fruits are backed by muscular tannins which lead into a tight knit finish. Spicy vanillin oak, light graphite and blackpepper elements ensue. Good depth with a long well defined conclusion.
Drink over the next 6-8 years.
This offers exceptional value. 7-10 days on skins, before quality French oak for 16 months, a smidgeon (15%) new. This is a plump rich red. The usual cavalcade of black fruits and spice, sure, but what makes this a joy to drink is the effortless mouthfeel. A gentle sash of tannins. Floral scents. A trickle of acidity rather than a forcefield. The wine just sits there, buoyant, mellow and juicy. Drink by 2024.
Ned Goodwin – James Halliday’s Australian Wine Companion