Lovely dark burgundy as I poured into the decanter but quite black in the glass. I last tried this on a Sunday morning back in November, and that was after vowing I'd already bought enough reds and so was only going to Cardinham to see if I could snaffle a bottle of their world beating 2003 Reisling.
Considering the early hour I felt my palate was abnormaly accurate so was surprised to see Gary Walsh's review pinned to the wall giving this only a 90. I told Noel, the winemaker, that I thought he had been hard done by with 'only' a 90 but Noel was all philosophical about it. I think you can afford to be philosophical when you make wines as good as he does.
Trying it again now, I do agree that the tannins are a bit too rustic but merely in the sense that this is clearly a wine to age for a while if you want to see it at it's best, and it should be a ripper in 5 years or so. There's plenty of delicious fruit, balanced acid, and good savoury complexity. The finish is fairly long and comes in waves.
Pretty big wine for a Clare Shiraz, but still quite classy. I'll also give you the tip that the barrel samples I tried of the 09 and 10 wines were extremely good stuff, keep an eye out down the track.
No hesitation in giving it a Highly Recommended++ and **** at $20
Since I have been slack about pics lately, here's one of the 2010 Cab Sav barrel sample at around 10 months old - as you can see the bloody thing was trying to climb out the glass!