2020 Massena The Eleventh Hour Shiraz
The Massena venture was started by two High School mates, Dan Standish (formerly winemaker at Torbreck) and Jaysen Collins (previously manager at Turkey Flat). The duo are noted for trialling unusual varieties such as Primitivo, Barbera, Dolcetto, Roussanne, Saperavi and Tannat. The sixty year old Shiraz vines from Greenock that form the base of this wine were ready to be uprooted due to the lack of yields and the reluctance of other companies to pay extra for the A grade fruit. After repeated requests for access to these grapes, at 'the eleventh hour' the owners agreed to stop the bulldozer and retain a small area of vines. No American oak is used at Massena. After 15 months in seasoned French oak the wine was moved to tank in individual components for several months before blending and bottling without fining or filtration.
Impenetrable black as night heart with a deep dark red black hue. Pronounced black cherry, liquorice and dark plum aromas jump out of the glass followed by some dried herb, vanillin cedar and blackpepper notes. Rich and lavishly textured the full bodied palate is awash with succulent black cherry, liquorice and dark plum fruits. Excellent concentration with vanillin cedar, traces of dark chocolate, earth and fennel also chiming in. Velvety tannins concluding long, well endowed and voluptuous.
Drink over the next 5-6 years.