Chapoutier and Laughton Cluster M45 Shiraz 2009
Syrah/Shiraz from Victoria, Australia
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Wine Style Guide
Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.
Alcohol By Volume: 14.5%
Alcohol By Volume Guide
Most 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%.
This Shiraz is grown in the Heathcote region, home of Jasper Hill. The tiny vineyard is planted with both Australian Shiraz clones, selected by Ron, and French Syrah clones, imported by Michel from cuttings from his Hermitage vineyard. The label depicts 'La Pleiade' (Seven Sisters), a small star cluster in the constellation of Taurus that can be viewed from both partners' home vineyards in Tain l'Hermitage and Heathcote.
"Supple, polished and open-textured, with a green olive note adding interest to the dark plum and tobacco notes at the core. The finish is expressive and impressively long, showing an
"The 2009 Cluster M45 presents a very deep purple-black color and aromas of ripe blackberries and crushed black currants over aromas of cloves, smoked bacon, Sichuan pepper and
tar plus a whiff of dark chocolate. Full bodied with mouth-filling rich, ripe fruit, it has a good
backbone of crisp acid, firm grainy tannins and a long pepper and smoked meat finish. Give it
another 12-18 months to open and soften and drink it to 2020+. A joint venture between Michel
Chapoutier from the Rhone and Ron Laughton of Jasper Hill in Heathcote, "Cluster M45" is the
USA label for this wine, known as "La Pleiade" elsewhere. It is made from 100% Shiraz from a
single vineyard near Jasper Hill's Georgia's Paddock, which is planted with a 50/50 mix of vines
taken from Jasper Hill and Chapoutier vineyards."
The Wine Advocate
"Dark purple. Deeply pitched aromas of dark berry preserves, cherry-cola, vanilla and licorice. Velvety and seamless in texture, offering sappy blueberry and cherry flavors that coat and
stain the palate. Extremely rich but not at all heavy (this weighs in at a relatively civilized 14.5% alcohol), with excellent finishing power and persistence."
International Wine Cellar
Learn About Chapoutier and Laughton
A chance meeting in the mid-nineties sealed a certain fate for two great winemaking families of modern times - the Laughtons of Heathcote, Victoria, and the Chapoutiers of the Rhone Valley, France. Ron Laughton and Michel Chapoutier, both passionate winemakers with a belief in biodynamic farming and its potential to express pure terroir, found they shared a common vision: to create...
Read More About Chapoutier and Laughton
Learn About Victoria
From stickies to Pinot Noir, Victoria is varied in its wines. The southernmost state of Australia, Victoria is third in wine production, after South Australia and New South Wales. The state is home to Yarra Valley as well as other cool climate growing regions, and yet, it also houses the regions of Rutherglen & Glenrowan. These two areas are hot and dusty and famous for their...
Read More About Victoria
Learn About Syrah/Shiraz
(seh-RAH/shee-RAHZ) It's a Smokin' Grape Syrah and Shiraz - same grape, different name. It's a popular and adept variety, growing in multiple regions and creating many different styles of wine. The home base of Syrah is the Northern Rhone, where it creates the exclusive wines of Hermitage and Cote Rotie. On the less pricy side, the Rhone makes Syrah-based wines in Crozes...
Read More About Syrah/Shiraz