d'Arenberg The Little Venice Single Vineyard Shiraz 2010
Syrah/Shiraz from McLaren Vale, Australia
The Little Venice Shiraz has a lifted nose; currants, plums and pepper with cedary spice all wrapped up in fresh potter's clay. There are appealing notes of saline fruit, forest floor and truffles that bring complexity. The palate starts with plenty of concentration and weight, then there's a pile of red and dark currants and plums to bring freshness and vibrancy. The tannins are long and mineral laced, finishing with a twist of crushed ants, meatiness and mushrooms that are becoming the hallmarks of this vineyard. While restrained in youth, with bottle age it will open up to reveal more layered and complex secondary characters. With careful cellaring this wine will drink well until at least 2030.
Australian Wine Companion - "The soil is shallow brown earth over a limestone base. Deep, bright purple-crimson; fuller and deeper than the Fruit Bat, with plum, black fruits, licorice in a layered tapestry, finishing with ripe but firm tannins."
The Wine Advocate - "With a deep garnet purple color, the 2010 The Little Venice Single Vineyard Shiraz offers a fruit-forward nose of ripe black cherry and blueberry notes intermingled with baking spices, star anise and chocolate box aromas. This medium to full-bodied wine is well-poised in the mouth, has a medium to firm level of rounded tannins and lively acid that gives a backbone to the expressive fruit, and has great persistence on the finish. It is approachable now and will drink to 2023+.
International Wine Cellar - "Glass-staining purple. Powerful aromas of cherry liqueur, blueberry, cola and licorice, with a peppery topnote. Lush and deeply pitched, offering ripe dark fruit flavors and a touch of bitter chocolate. Becomes spicier with air and finishes on a palate-numbing note of Szechuan peppercorn, with excellent cut and length."
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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 with the Indian Ocean bordering the west, which contributes 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 most-planted grapes of the region. 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 region 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
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.