William's Somewhat Old Shiraz - a Penfolds Magill Estate vertical and some extras (Culina, Dempsey Hill): Drinking beautifully when first poured. Unfortunately, this did not have quite enough fuel in the tank to go the distance, fading a little after about half an hour in the glass. Lovely nose - musky notes of dried fruit, prunes and plums was wed to spice, cocoa, dusty earth and chalky minerals. Unmistakably Australian in its dark fruit and sweet spice profile, but with a gentle complexity that one seldom sees in more modern wines. On the attack, the palate struck me as being absolutely fresh and alive, with mouthfilling flavours of ripe plums and prunes, just starting to enter the dried fruit territory. The wine had really elegant lines though - with low alcohol wed to integrated acidity and silky tannins. All lovely, aromatic and balance. More spice and smoky tobacco notes asserted themselves at the mid-palate. Finish had an impressive length, with a hint of Aussie Shiraz crushed beetle notes, smoky ash, mushroomy earth notes, dried prunes and haw flakes. The wine lost energy after time in the glass unfortunately, flagging a bit at the end, and showing lots of smoke notes with little fruit. Still though, an absolutely charmer which was extremely interesting to drink throughout.
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