John Duval Entity Shiraz (1.5L Magnum) 2008
Syrah/Shiraz from Barossa Valley, Australia
A true reflection of Barossa's soil and climate, Entity displays youthful dark fruits of blackberry and plum that combine with a hint of mocha and savory French oak. The long, rich palate is driven by concentrated dark fruit characters that are balanced by firm tannins, bright acidity and well integrated French oak that adds structure and polish to the wine.
Australian Wine Companion - "Intense, dark purple-crimson; a highly expressive and complex bouquet of black fruits, licorice and oak is followed by a full-bodied palate that is savoury rather than jammy, notes of dark chocolate joining the black fruits. A 30-year future is conservative."
The Wine Advocate - "The 2008 Entity Shiraz has a deep garnet-purple color and intense notes of kirsch, creme de cassis, menthol, chocolate, anise, spices and tree bark. Rich, concentrated and full-bodied yet not overly alcoholic (14.5% declared alcohol), this is a seamlessly balanced Shiraz unfolding layers of pure dark berry and spice flavors in the long finish. Though approachable now, it should open further in a year or two and drink well to 2020+. "
International Wine Cellar - "Opaque purple. Blackberry, violet, licorice, bitter chocolate and Indian spices on the nose. Dense and sweet but with racy, integrated acidity energizing the dark fruit, floral pastille and bitter chocolate flavors. Finishes with sweet tannins and noteworthy freshness and length. Becomes spicier with air and already displays impressive complexity."
Wine Spectator - "Bright and generous, not weighty, offering a ripe mouthful of blackberry, floral and mineral flavors, lingering on the crisp, refined finish. Impressive for its nicely etched flavor profile."
Wine Enthusiast - "Duval's 2008 Entity boasts intense aromas of blackberries, vanilla and coffee, and those notes are echoed in its flavors. It's full-bodied and creamy on the palate, gliding easity into a finely balanced finish, framed by just the right amount of tannin. "
Wine & Spirits - "New oak richness brackets this wine's flavors at the beginning and the end. In the middle, it's packed with blueberry fruit and ironstone tannin, those tannins softened a bit by their time in wood, but still authentic and very present. Give this bottle age to absorb some of its oak; the fruit and structure are there to sustain it."
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John Duval Winery
John Duval began his self-titled label in 2003. Duval graduated from Adelaide University in 1973 with a degree in agriculture and winemaking before becoming a winemaker for Penfolds for the next 29 years. Duval was appointed Chief Winemaker at Penfolds in 1986 and was lucky enough to oversee one of the most dynamic periods of change in the Australian wine industry. He received Winemaker of the Year at the International Wine and Spirit Competition in London in 1989; Red Winemaker of the Year at the International Wine Challenge in London in 1991 and again in 2000; and saw the 1990 Penfolds Grange named the Wine of the Year by the prestigious US magazine Wine Spectator in 1995.
Duval focuses on fruit that comes from older vines in Barossa, including Rhone varietals, leading to one of his stellar ones, "Plexus." View all John Duval 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 proper. 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.