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Elderton Command Shiraz 2004

Syrah/Shiraz from Barossa, Australia
  • RP96
  • WE95
Ships Thu, Sep 28
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Winemaker Notes

"The 2004 Shiraz "Command" comes from a single block of 104-year-old vines. It was aged in 100% new oak puncheons (400 liter barrels). Opaque purple-colored, this Shiraz has fabulous aromatics of smoke, melted tar, licorice, espresso, game, and blueberry compote. Layered but tight, this full-bodied wine is thick, rich, and totally hedonistic. The finish lasts for 60 seconds. However, be warned. This monumental Shiraz needs 10-15 years to fully unfold. It will provide pleasure through 2035."
Robert Parker's The Wine Advocate
96 Points

Critical Acclaim

RP 96
The Wine Advocate

Medium garnet in color, the 2004 Shiraz Command Elderton Estate is a little mute at this stage, revealing subtle to moderate aromas of leather, sandalwood and spice over warm blackberry plus some mocha. Full-bodied with medium-firm fine tannins, complex evolving flavors and a great line of acid, the finish is very long. Give it another year or 2 for the nose to emerge from this closed stage and drink it 2012 to 2022+.

WE 95
Wine Enthusiast

The current release, 2003, is an excellent wine, but this vintage kicks it up a notch. It's brighter, fresher and more vibrant than its amply endowed precursor, bursting with peppery raspberries. Creamy and rich, yet wonderfully balanced, and while you could drink it now, it will also cellar well for 10-plus years.
Cellar Selection

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Elderton

Elderton

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Elderton, , Australia
Elderton
Established in 1982 by Lorraine and Neil Ashmead, Elderton Wines is now run by the second generation - Cameron and Allister Ashmead. They are custodians of a Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot Barossa floor vineyard, with plantings dating back to 1894. At present, they have been listed multiple times among Wine Spectator's Top 100 Wines and received numerous other prestigious accolades.

By far the largest and best-known winemaking province in Argentina, Mendoza is responsible for over 70% of the country’s enological output. Set in the eastern foothills of the Andes Mountains, the climate is dry and continental, presenting relatively few challenges for viticulturists during the growing season. Mendoza is divided into several distinctive sub-regions, including Luján de Cuyo and the Uco Valley—two sources of some of the country’s finest wines.

For many wine lovers, Mendoza is practically synonymous with Malbec, originally a Bordelaise variety brought to Argentina by the French in the mid-1800s. Here it found success and renown it never could have achieved in its homeland due to its struggle to ripen fully in finicky climates. Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Merlot, and Pinot Noir are all widely planted here as well (and often blended with one another. The best white wines are made from Chardonnay, and there are excellent examples to be found as well from Torrontés, Sauvignon Blanc, and Sémillon.

Known for its big, bold flavors and supple texture, Malbec is most famous for its runaway success in Argentina. However, the variety actually originates in Bordeaux, where it historically contributed color and tannin to blends but was susceptible to viticultural problems. After being nearly wiped out by a devastating frost in 1956, it was never significantly replanted, although it did flourish under the name Côt in nearby Cahors. Malbec was brought to Argentina in 1868 by a French agronomist who saw great potential for the variety in Mendoza’s hot, high-altitude landscape, but did not gain its current reputation as the national grape of Argentina until a surge in popularity in the late 20th century thanks to its easy-going drinkability.

In the Glass

Malbec typically expresses deep flavors of freshly turned earth, black fruits from berries to plums, and licorice, appropriately backed by dense, chewy tannins. In warmer, New World regions, such as Mendoza, it can be quite intense and often needs time to mellow before becoming drinkable. In the Old World, its rusticity shines, with aged examples showing dusty notes of leather and tobacco. The best examples in all regions often possess a beguiling bouquet of violets.

Perfect Parings

Malbec’s rustic character begs for flavorful dishes, like spicy grilled sausages or the classic cassoulet of France’s Southwest. South American iterations are best enjoyed as they would be in Argentina: with a thick, juicy steak.

Sommelier Secret

If you’re trying to please a crowd, Malbec is generally a safe bet. With its combination of bold flavors and soft tannins, it will appeal to basically anyone who enjoys red wine. Malbec also wins bonus points for affordability, as even the most inexpensive examples are often quite good.

SSRCOMMAND_2004 Item# 94045

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