Robert Parker 98+
It is always a treat to taste Australia’s most famous wine, Penfolds’ Grange cuvee (the word Hermitage has been dropped because of legal issues). The 2001 Grange is one of the few vintages of this cuvee to be composed of 100% Shiraz (the others being 1951, 1952, 1963, 1999, and 2000). Aged 17 months in 100% American oak, and tipping the scales at 14.5% alcohol, the 2001 is undeniably one of the top examples of this wine. At this stage, it appears to eclipse the 1998 and 1996. Inky/blue/purple to the rim, with a stunning perfume of blueberries, blackberries, chocolate, graphite, and earth, it boasts good acidity, huge tannins, magnificent concentration, and a multilayered, textured mouthfeel. It is a big, but impeccably well-balanced Shiraz that should shed some of its structure and tannin over the next 4-5 years, and be at its best between 2010-2030+.
Anticipated maturity: 2010-2030
100% Barossa Valley Shiraz. 50% Kalimna Vineyard (Barossa Valley), 50% Barossa Valley. Extremely dense and luminous to look at. A particularly warm summer produced this exotic cocktail. Rich, sweet with sufficient acidity, but this is decidedly embryonic with what is still a pretty dry finish. Forget it for a while.
Anticipated maturity: 2018-2050