Very Important 2001 Shirazes

Jancis Robinson 2007

… Had a look at some Very Important 2001s the other night: Penfolds Grange, Hermitage la Chapelle, Chapoutier Le Pavillon Ermitage, Delas’s Marquise de Tourette and their single vineyard Bessards bottlings of Hermitage, Guigal’s Chateau d’Ampuis Côte Rôtie …

… so opened them all at the same time. But the Grange was still so tight that it was virtually ignored on the night and left in a particularly wide decanter for 24 hours, after which it was delicious. It reminded me how important it is to serve young wines of this sort sympathetically …

But the real surprise of the night was the newcomer, the Alttus …

 

2001 Alttus   18+/20

The highest portion of the vineyard and the best barrels, bottled separately from the Finniss River Shiraz bottling. It was aged in assorted new French oaks for 18 months. 600 cases made. Also made in 2003.

Great healthy crimson. Very rich and ripe on the nose. Not obviously Australian on the nose – maybe old style Australian, the sort of bottle that lurked in Len Evans’ cellar. Lovely texture! Complex. Well knit. Subtle, absolutely a cross between Australia and northern Rhône.

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