d'Arenberg The Stump Jump Red 2017
This wine screams value. A rich ruby red appearance with a fragrant nose of raspberry, a hint of dark cherry and spice. Silky texture on the palate, but with a juicy fruit core that shows plum, red berries, and a savory finish. There are lovely soft tannins and some slight acidity. The fruit weight and silkyness means this wine can be enjoyed now, but it will keep developing over time.
Blend: 46% Grenache, 42% Shiraz, 12% Mourvedre
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
This is a strong bottling of this Cabernet-dominant red blend. There’s a slight funk at first, which quickly blows off to reveal aromas of mint, tomato stem, iodine, pencil shavings and warm clay, all weaving through puckered, sunkissed fruit. The palate is big and broad yet raspy and a little on the warm side alcohol-wise. It avoids being syrupy, however, thanks to a lifted line of acidity and a grip of sinewy, spicy tannins. Shows variety and place expression at an affordable price point. Old Bridge Cellars. Best Buy.
d'Arenberg is one of the undisputed kings of Australian Shiraz and other Rhone varieties that have historically defined the region. A century on, their vineyards have grown to some 450 acres in McLaren Vale, including Shiraz dating back to d'Arenberg's first plantings in 1912, and nearly one-third of McLaren Vale's old bush-vine Grenache. Fourth generation winemaker, Chester Osborn, recently converted all of the family's vineyards to organics and biodynamics and moved to solar energy in the winery. All the while, in terms of winemaking, not much has changed--all the wines are basket-pressed, the reds foot-trodden during fermentation; everything is done in small batches, leading to an impressive array of bottlings every year, each showing a different facet of McLaren Vale terroir. Having been inducted into Wine & Spirits Magazine's Hall of Fame for earning a place on its Top 100 Wineries nine times, this accolade is a reflection of d'Arenberg's revered reputation worldwide.
Known for opulent red wines with intense power and concentration, McLaren Vale is home to perhaps the most “classic” style of Australian Shiraz. Vinified on its own or in Rhône Blends, these hot-climate wines are deeply colored and high in extract with signature hints of dark chocolate and licorice. Cabernet Sauvignon is also produced in a similar style.
With bold fruit flavors and accents of sweet spice, Grenache, Syrah and Mourvèdre form the base of the classic Rhône Red Blend, while Carignan, Cinsault and Counoise often come in to play. Though they originated from France’s southern Rhône Valley, with some creative interpretation, Rhône blends have also become popular in other countries. Somm Secret—Putting their own local spin on the Rhône Red Blend, those from Priorat often include Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. In California, it is not uncommon to see Petite Sirah make an appearance.