Penfolds RWT Shiraz 2003
Syrah/Shiraz from Barossa Valley, Australia
Wine Spectator Top 100 of 2006!
"Big, rich and vibrant, a spectacular mouthful of cherry, currant and a subtle range of peppers and spices and creaminess, finishing with refined tannins and a silky texture that lets the fruit and spice sail on and on. Best from 2009 through 2018."
Australian Wine Companion - "Great outcome for a lesser vintage; right from the outset, a fusion of black fruits and fine French oak each supporting the other; silky and caressing."
International Wine Cellar - "Dark red. Smoky, toasty aromas of blackberry, creme de cassis, licorice candy, cappuccino, mocha and fresh rose. Broad and sweet, the fruit taking a turn to the red side, showing ripe raspberry and red plum preserve flavors accented by spicy oak. While undeniably ripe, the fruit has clarity and plenty of energy. Finishes quite long, with the tannins sneaking in but not at the expense of the fruit."
Wine & Spirits - "RWT (red wine trial) is a selection of top shiraz that ages in new French oak barriques rather than the American oak used for Grange. Dense and reduced at first, with blackberry and balsamic edges, this takes form with air. Tart cherry and black pepper spice emerge as the tannins give it definition with their earthy, mineral character. If you choose not to age it, serve it with roast duck."
Wine Enthusiast - "Inky purple-black in color, this looks like a heavyweight, and lovers of big, rich wines likely won’t be disappointed. It’s full-bodied, verging on heavy, with chocolaty plum and prune flavors that nevertheless stay surprisingly fresh on the long finish. It’s approachable now, but how long it will last is a tough call."
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Penfolds Wines Winery
Founded by a young, English doctor in 1844, Penfolds has been producing remarkable wines that have changed the landscape of Australian winemaking. Over the past century, Penfolds has indisputably led the development of Australian fine wine in the modern era. The introduction of Penfolds Grange in 1951 forever changed the landscape of Australian fine wine. Since then, a series of standout wines, both white and red, have been released under the Penfolds masthead. Under the direction of master winemaker, Peter Gago, Penfolds is now found in every major wine market in the country. Extraordinary wines such as Block 42 and Bin 60A have also been released during his tenure. Penfolds wines are now widely celebrated for their diversity and quality across many price-points. The strength of Penfolds is that the wine comes first. Penfolds' range of table wines is utterly Australian, evoking a generosity of spirit and the beauty of the Australian landscape.
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 & Crisp
- Light to medium bodied wines that are high in acid and light to medium fruit. Typically no oak.
Fruity & Smooth
- Light to medium bodied wines with lots of juicy fruit, typically medium acid and medium oak.
Rich & Creamy
- Full bodied wines that have typically undergone malo-lactic fermentation and/or spent time in oak.