Elderton Command Shiraz 2004
Syrah/Shiraz from Barossa Valley, Australia
"The 2004 Shiraz "Command" comes from a single block of 104-year-old vines. It was aged in 100% new oak puncheons (400 liter barrels). Opaque purple-colored, this Shiraz has fabulous aromatics of smoke, melted tar, licorice, espresso, game, and blueberry compote. Layered but tight, this full-bodied wine is thick, rich, and totally hedonistic. The finish lasts for 60 seconds. However, be warned. This monumental Shiraz needs 10-15 years to fully unfold. It will provide pleasure through 2035."
Robert Parker's The Wine Advocate
The Wine Advocate - "Medium garnet in color, the 2004 Shiraz Command Elderton Estate is a little mute at this stage, revealing subtle to moderate aromas of leather, sandalwood and spice over warm blackberry plus some mocha. Full-bodied with medium-firm fine tannins, complex evolving flavors and a great line of acid, the finish is very long. Give it another year or 2 for the nose to emerge from this closed stage and drink it 2012 to 2022+."
Wine Enthusiast - "The current release, 2003, is an excellent wine, but this vintage kicks it up a notch. It's brighter, fresher and more vibrant than its amply endowed precursor, bursting with peppery raspberries. Creamy and rich, yet wonderfully balanced, and while you could drink it now, it will also cellar well for 10-plus years.
International Wine Cellar - "Dark purple. Bright red and dark berry scents display impressive focus and clarity, with subtle baking spice and vanilla notes adding complexity. Very fresh-in fact almost painfully young-with nervy raspberry and cherry flavors supported by silky tannins and a jolt of acidity on the back. This opened up a bit with air, but really should be cellared for at least another five years.
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Established in 1982 by Lorraine and Neil Ashmead, Elderton Wines is now run by the second generation - Cameron and Allister Ashmead. They are custodians of a Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot Barossa floor vineyard, with plantings dating back to 1894. At present, they have been listed multiple times among Wine Spectator's Top 100 Wines and received numerous other prestigious accolades. View all Elderton Wines
About Barossa ValleyView a map of Barossa Valley wineries
The Barossa zone consists of two sections - the Barossa Valley and the Eden Valley. Wines from the Eden Valley can be labelled Barossa or Barossa Valley.
Situated just a bit east of the large city of Adelaide, Barossa is Australia's wine headquarters. Mega producers are based here, boutique wineries call it home and a majority of the habitants claim their income on the wine industry. The valley is strewn with a series of hamlets, small towns spotted throughout the region.
Barossa ValleyBarossa is red-wine territory, with red grapes consisting of about two-thirds of the region's plantings. The reds, Shiraz in particular, are lauded for their rich, concentrated flavors and aging potential. Old vines of Shiraz and Grenache are popular, many up to 80 years old. The valley is home to some of the most famous vineyards of Australia - this is where the first Penfolds Grange was made. Whites are also found, mainly from the Semillon grape – these wines are as full-bodied as the reds although harder to find. Riesling and Chardonnay are also planted.
Eden ValleyRight next to Barossa Valley, but a bit higher in elevation, Eden Valley is an ideal neighbor. Many wineries source vineyards from both areas as the climate difference in Eden Valley leads to wines of a different character. Reds are still mainly Shiraz and Grenache, but the wines are often more restrained and less dense than those in the Barossa Valley. Whites are popular here too. Eden Valley Rieslings and Semillons are particularly 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.
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