Notes of fennel, purple flowers and blossom mingling with ripe, varietal purple fruits and black pepper, dried herbs, game and spice. The palate opens with anise, black pepper, graphite and restrained dark cherries before it gives way to seductive mulberry, plum, licorice and spice. It has great power, depth and length with very vibrant, gritty fruit tannins providing immense structure.
Australian Wine CompanionDeep colour; vivid hue; fresh black fruits, licorice, toasty oak and sappy complexity are all evident on the bouquet; the palate is dark and chewy, but falls short of being ponderous, as the wine progresses at an even and stately pace across the palate; excellent execution indeed.
DecanterThe Dead Arm is consistently Chester's best wine, and this is a typical example of its old vine concentration. Sweet, dense and rich, but somehow poised and refreshing, with integrated oak, a hint of grilled meat and bright violet, plum and blackberry fruit. As good as the brilliant 2006.
International Wine CellarGlass-staining purple. Dark berries, licorice, Indian spices, violet and cocoa powder on the highly complex nose. Concentrated and tactile, with superb depth and noteworthy definition to the black cherry and dark berry preserve flavors. Wonderfully broad but lively on the long, sappy, penetrating finish. The tannins are chewy but in no way dry or hard. The wine's excellent fruit will allow for early drinking.
The Wine AdvocateDeep garnet-purple colored, the 2008 The Dead Arm Shiraz has a reduced rubber character to begin then pronounced aromas of warm blackberries, licorice, earth, thyme, moss and a whiff of game. Crisp, full and very concentrated in the mouth, it has firm, very fine tannins and a long earthy finish. Give it another year or two in bottle and drink it 2013 to 2020.
Wine SpectatorThis fresh, open-textured Shiraz is generous with its currant and plum fruit, mingling harmoniously with spicy notes on the slightly chalky finish. Drink now through 2016.
Wine EnthusiastConcentrated and intense,
this wine features a potent whack of oak on the nose,
with dark fruit and mocha overtones. There are enough
hints of bright, raspberry-tinged fruit to warrant optimism
about its aging trajectory, but at the moment it is
dark, heavy and slightly scorched. Try after 2017. Cellar Selection.
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