Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Domaine Terlato and Chapoutier Victorian Shiraz-Viognier, 2006

Michel Chapoutier is from an old wine-making family in the Rhone Valley of France. Anthony Terlato is a Napa Valley winemaker. Together, they are producing wines from some very good vineyards in Central Victoria, Australia. This wine is 95% Shiraz with just a touch of Viognier (a white wine grape) for aromatic complexity. It is a combination used by many Northern Rhone winemakers to produce Cote Rotie.

I don't smell or taste the Viognier in this wine, and that is how it should be. It adds yet another layer of pleasure to both the nose and palate. Black raspberries and peppercorn. Ripe and inviting but multidimensional. Rich, velvety mouth feel but not at all thick or heavy. Lots of ripe black fruits--plum and berry--on the palate. The only thing that concerns me about this wine is the color. The rusty, brickish tone is to be expected from a wine of this age, but the color lacks the brightness and saturation that I usually note in a wine of this quality. It's drinking beautifully right now so my inclination (primarily because of the color) is to drink the remaining bottles relatively soon.

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