d'Arenberg The Amaranthine Shiraz 2010
Syrah/Shiraz from McLaren Vale, Australia
Big purple fruit to start, super concentrated, this is a wine on full throttle. Layers of fruit, spice, earth and meatiness. While big, rich and mouth-filling, there's a sense of elegance and balance too. On the palate this wine is dark and earthy with rich purple fruits. There are intriguing layers of perfume, musk, crushed ants, flowers and anise. The tannins are alive and textural with a great acid line keeping it all in check. Essence of Dead Arm.
Australian Wine Companion - "The 44-year-old vines are planted on an east-facing slope in the Beautiful View sub region with its loamy sand on limestone. Once again, the color is impeccable, the bouquet a mix of dark and milder chocolate and cooking spices; licorice joins the dark chocolate on the palate, which has delicious mouthfeel thanks to the very fine tannins."
International Wine Cellar - "Inky purple. Black raspberry, fruitcake, espresso and cola on the highly perfumed nose, complemented by smoky oak. Plush and silky on entry, then energetic in the mid-palate, with bright minerality and tangy acidity giving shape and energy to the wine's blueberry, vanilla and mocha flavors. Finishes tactile and very long, with fine-grained tannins, alluring sweetness and very good lift."
The Wine Advocate - "Deep garnet-purple in color, the 2010 The Amaranthine Single Vineyard Shiraz is slightly reduced at the start but eventually gives way to ripe blueberry, black currant and black plum notes over tar, licorice, bacon and dried Mediterranean herbs. Full-bodied and densely packed with earthy, black berry flavors, the medium to firm level of grainy tannins and refreshing acid carry the wine to a long, pepper-laced finish."
Wine Spectator - "A racy style, with chewy tannins around a lithe core of blackberry, black pepper, licorice and tar flavors, coming together seamlessly."
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One of the undisputed kings of Australian Shiraz and Rhone varietals, d'Arenberg has managed to turn individuality into an art form by doing a whole lot of little things differently. The original vineyards were established by Joseph Osborn in 1912 in the McLaren Vale region of South Australia. A century on, the estate has grown to 345 acres, and the mantle now rests with fourth-generation winemaker, Chester Osborn. By maintaining a focus on traditional winemaking and nurturing their old-vine material, the Osborn clan has successfully established themselves as one of the country's leading producers of concentrated wines that are full of character. View all d'Arenberg 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