Chapoutier and Laughton Cluster M45 Shiraz 2009 Front Label
Chapoutier and Laughton Cluster M45 Shiraz 2009 Front Label

Chapoutier and Laughton Cluster M45 Shiraz 2009

  • WS94
  • RP93
750ML / 14.5% ABV
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  • RP96
  • WS93
  • RP96
  • WE91
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750ML / 14.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

This Shiraz is grown in the Heathcote region, home of Jasper Hill. The tiny vineyard is planted with both Australian Shiraz clones, selected by Ron, and French Syrah clones, imported by Michel from cuttings from his Hermitage vineyard. The label depicts 'La Pleiade' (Seven Sisters), a small star cluster in the constellation of Taurus that can be viewed from both partners' home vineyards in Tain l'Hermitage and Heathcote.

Critical Acclaim

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WS 94
Wine Spectator
Supple, polished and open-textured, with a green olive note adding interest to the dark plum and tobacco notes at the core. The finish is expressive and impressively long, showing an appealing transparency.
RP 93
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2009 Cluster M45 presents a very deep purple-black color and aromas of ripe blackberries and crushed black currants over aromas of cloves, smoked bacon, Sichuan pepper and tar plus a whiff of dark chocolate. Full bodied with mouth-filling rich, ripe fruit, it has a good backbone of crisp acid, firm grainy tannins and a long pepper and smoked meat finish. Give it another 12-18 months to open and soften and drink it to 2020+. A joint venture between Michel Chapoutier from the Rhone and Ron Laughton of Jasper Hill in Heathcote, "Cluster M45" is the USA label for this wine, known as "La Pleiade" elsewhere. It is made from 100% Shiraz from a single vineyard near Jasper Hill's Georgia's Paddock, which is planted with a 50/50 mix of vines taken from Jasper Hill and Chapoutier vineyards.
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Chapoutier and Laughton

Chapoutier and Laughton

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Chapoutier and Laughton, Australia
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A chance meeting in the mid-nineties sealed a certain fate for two great winemaking families of modern times – the Laughtons of Heathcote, Victoria, and the Chapoutiers of the Rhone Valley, France. Ron Laughton and Michel Chapoutier, both passionate winemakers with a belief in biodynamic farming and its potential to express pure terroir, found they shared a common vision: to create a pair of wines from far-reaching corners of the globe that would each express their distinct origins, yet remain allied through the philosophy of their creation. The Agly Brothers, as they have named themselves, Côtes du Roussillon (Carignan blend from 100 year old vines) and Cambrien Shiraz represent the labors of the Laughton and Chapoutier families in this endeavor.

This dynamic partnership also yielded a Shiraz vineyard in Central Victoria’s Heathcote region, the home of Jasper Hill. Planted in the spring of 1998, this tiny vineyard was established on virgin red Cambrian soils and planted with both Australian Shiraz clones, selected by Ron, and French Syrah clones, imported by Michel from cuttings off his famous Hermitage vineyard. The label depicts ‘La Pleiade’ (The Pleiades, Seven Sisters), a small, wispy star cluster in the constellation of Taurus that can be viewed by the naked eye from both partners’ home vineyards in Tain l’Hermitage and Heathcote. Revered in legends by ancient cultures of most civilisations, including the Gauls and Aboriginal Australians, the Greek mythology of the Pleiades is linked to the seven beautiful daughters of Atlas and Pleione and their pursuit by Orion.

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Though Syrah originated in the Rhône Valley of France, Australia is home to the oldest Syrah (called Shiraz here) vines on the planet. Found in Australia’s Barossa Valley, where phylloxera has never threated viticulture, these ancient vines are between 140 to 175 years old!

Having brought fame and merit to the country’s wine scene since the early 1950s, namely via the debut of Penfolds Grange, today Syrah (Shiraz) claims rank as the most widely planted grape in Australia. In fact, the amount of land dedicated to Shiraz in Australia is now almost equivalent to what it is in France. Australian Shiraz has its own personality with flavors and aromas of intense blackberry, fruitcake, menthol, tobacco leaf and umami. Conveniently one can find great Australian Shiraz at a variety of price points but the very best will be dense, gloriously complex and capable of long aging.

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OBCPLEIADE_2009 Item# 129989

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