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Community Tasting Notes (21) Avg Score: 92.1 points

  • RP's review of this in 2/2000 reminds me of CH's 2003-4 offerings, which are just ridiculous right now. So I can imagine this wine being quite good 2-4 years ago. Unfortunately, this 1997 is falling apart and you can both see and taste it during the two days of drinking.

    Yesterday was a little more vibrant, showing a little more fruits as RP described, but today, it has devolved to Spanish cedar - what people call cigar box - leftover tannins, and peppercorn. There's not much left in this old wine, but there's a memory here, a ghost of greatness past, and that's nice in itself.

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  • Whaouw nose of roasted steak, very dense and pure at the same time, perfume, cassis, cigar box, cedar... Delicious and sappy wine, strawberries and raspberries... very elegant wine in between all previous body builders...

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  • This bottle is over its peak and thus beginning to pull apart, although still massive and cohesive. Ruby color with big tears and an intense port-like bouquet of dried oak, wood spices, dried fruit, and licorice with some notes of sweet dough. Palate is also intense with bright acidity, dried fruit paste and sticky tannins that lengthen the fruit enough to countyerbalance the other elements. Finishes short to medium with notes of chocolate and spices. If you have one, I would wait much longer.

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  • This wine just blew me away. It has been a long time since I just sat there and tried to get my head around a wine. It is the kind of wine that you don’t come out and say, that is the best or one of the best bottles I ever had… but it is hard to think of a better bottle. When you taste a Grange, you know from the get go what you have and that it is a great wine in your hand. This wine is sheer craftsmanship. The winemaker has set out to use the quality of Australian fruit but build a Hermitage. And it is probably one of the few wines outside of Hermitage that could be aligned with those that come right from the top of the hill near the Chapel. On the nose it is Hermitage – if a warmer fruitier one, but the palette is a mix of the beautiful earthy flavor of hermitages' great wines with a classically smooth Australian fruit. The palette is full and flavoursome and long. So strong that after an hour or two it still dominates the flavors in your mouth… and leaving it overnight (after extracting the air), it barely budged an inch. Jade and I did our due diligence and got out the wine scent kit to try and identify the flavours present. While it has a rich earthy sense (I say sense because it is hard to define between nose and palette with this wine it is so seamless) as a base, the fruits are just beautiful. Red and black currant, blackberry and prune… nothing too sweet. I also felt a little pepper was there, but Jade didn’t agree with me on that one

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  • Medium colour. The nose explodes fresh raspberry almost from first opening and persists.Unfortunately that is its best feature. It lacks enough tannin for structure and is out of balance.The fruit never comes through to what the nose promises. Don't hold on to this one. I put it in a blind tasting 2 yr ago and it was exactly the same then

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  • By Stephen Tanzer
    July/August 1999, IWC Issue #85, (See more on Vinous...)

    (Clarendon Hills Syrah Piggott Range Clarendon) Subscribe to see review text.

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