Oliverhill Red Silk Shiraz 2008
Syrah/Shiraz from McLaren Vale, Australia
The nose shows notes of higher pitched dark red fruits, then broader blueberry plumpness, and a hint of chocolate along with a subtle earth and spice component aromatically. Fuller bodied and layered the palate offers the generosity one expects from the producer and the region (Mclaren Vale), with riper, sleek tannins offering enough grip to focus the fruit. Expressive and totally engaging with its mouth coating, plump black fruit flavors, sweet but not candied, there is a savory chocolate edge to the fruit reflective of its origins. Generous but not over the top, this is a wine that you will actually love to have a second glass and then a third. As good as this is now this should really come to together over the next 6 months to a year and make some serious inroads into a category that is in need of wines with a personality and character like this. At under $20 this really delivers the goods.
The Wine Advocate - "The 2008 Red Silk Shiraz is opaque purple/black with a bouquet of cedar, damp earth, lavender, incense, black raspberry, and blueberry preserves, Rich, concentrated and layered on the palate, it is loaded with sweet, savory black fruit, spices, and chocolate. Smooth-textured and lengthy, it will drink well for a decade."
International Wine Cellar - "Deep, vivid ruby. Powerful, pungent aromas of blackberry, boysenberry, bitter chocolate and smoky minerals. Lush, palate-saturating dark berry preserve flavors are complemented by notes of smoked meat, licorice and graphite. Supple tannins add grip to the long, sweet, clinging finish. Very young but there’s an alluring quality to its extroverted fruit."
Oliverhill is a small boutique winery (McLaren Vale has been refined to as the spiritual home of the small winery in Australia) that specializes in premium quality limited production reds. Specifically, a single vineyard Shiraz, “Jimmy Section”, coming from a small 5-acre plot planted nearly 30 years ago an old vine Grenache, “Bradey Block”, made from vines up to 80 years old and a Cabernet Sauvignon produced from the “Jimmy Section” vineyard. The Grenache and the Shiraz represent the classic South Australian style, big and juicy with sweet black fruits, brood shouldered with substantial palate presence, yet maintaining balance and exceptional fruit intensity. The Cabernet Sauvignon although not as big and mouth filling texturally maintains noted fruit intensity with a long and persistent finish. All 3 reds are produced in an extremely limited format with total production hovering around 1000 cases total. The Millers, producing handcrafted wines that are truly artisan in style, will never produce a lot of wine but what they do produce will always be of the highest quality. View all Oliverhill Wines
About McLaren ValeView a map of McLaren Vale wineries
McLaren Vale is home to the oldest Australian vineyard, with grapes planted in 1838. It's a coastal area, the Indian Ocean bordering the west, which leads to a cooling factor that prevents the grapes from getting too hot. In all, the climate is a perfect one for the vines.
Notable FactsIn McLaren Vale, there are vines as far as the eye can see. As in other parts of Australia, Shiraz and Grenache are the top grapes of the region, with some Cabernet Sauvignon planted as well. While red rules, whites are able to hold their own here too. With the warm yet reasonable Mediterranean climate, white grapes like Chardonnay, Semillon and even some Sauvignon Blanc grow well. The wines are round and smooth and the producers in the regions are excellent.
About AustraliaLike the United States, which is about the same size, Australia's winemaking regions are huddled into one or two pockets of the country. The state of South Australia, which produces about 60% of the country's wine, also has the most wineries and sub-regions, including McLaren Vale, Clare Valley, Coonawarra and Barossa Valley. New South Wales is home to the Hunter Valley, while the smaller, southern state of Victoria is best known for theYarra Valley. Head way west to the very large state of Western Australia and you'll find the tiny region of Margaret River at the southern tip.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.