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Flat front label of wine
Flat front label of wine

Parson's Flat Cabernet/Shiraz 2002

Other Red Blends from Australia
  • RP91
0% ABV
  • JH90
  • RP93
  • JH91
  • RP95
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Winemaker Notes

This blend of 65% Shiraz and 35% Cabernet Sauvignon from 10-year old vines cropped remarkably high for the resulting quality (4 - 4.5 tons of fruit per acre) represents a 700-case pleasure bomb. Although it is stunning, I am a little concerned about how well it will age given its forward style and cleverly crafted personality. Fashioned by brilliant winemakers Sarah and Sparky Marquis, and aged in both French and American oak (primarily new), it displays tremendous full-bodied, intense cassis flavors, low acidity, ripe tannin, and that tell-tale Sarah/Sparky Marquis seamlessness, opulence, and voluptuousness. The inky/ruby/purple color is followed by a pure, alluring, enormously satisfying Australian red that may reveal even more complexity over the next 6-8 years.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 91
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
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Parson's Flat

Parson's Flat

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Parson's Flat, Australia
During the nineteenth century establishment of the farming and wine industries of southeastern South Australia, horse-drawn coaches provided the only transportation of mail and passengers. The coach drivers reigned supreme on top of their coaches, and won the respect and admiration of their passengers. The coach service proprietor in this part of the state was a certain Mr. Henry John Hill. His operation drove directly through a property owned more recently by three generations of the Longbottom family of Padthaway. Routes were known as Drives, thus the family's wine business is today known as Henry's Drive.

Third generation pastoralists Mark and Kim Longbottom are forging a new family tradition of fine winemaking with brands such as Henry's Drive, Parson's Flat, Dead Letter Office and Pillar Box.

Australia

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A large, climatically diverse country producing just about every wine style imaginable, Australia is not just a source of blockbuster Shiraz or inexpensive wine with cute labels, though both can certainly be found here. Australia has a grand winemaking history and some of the oldest vines on the planet, along with a huge range of landscapes and climates; it is impossible to make generalizations about Australian wine. Most regions are concentrated in the south of the country with those inland experiencing warm, dry weather, and those in more coastal areas receiving humid and tropical, or maritime weather patterns. Australia has for several decades been at the forefront of winemaking technology and has widely adopted the use of screwcaps, even for some premium and ultra-premium bottles.

Shiraz is indeed Australia’s most celebrated and widely planted variety, typically producing bold, supple reds with sweet, jammy fruit and performing best in the Barossa and Hunter Valleys. Cabernet Sauvignon is often blended with Shiraz, and also shines on its own particularly in Coonawarra and Margaret River. Grenache and Mourvèdre (often locally referred to as Mataro) are also popular, both on their own and alongside Shiraz in Rhône blends. Chardonnay is common throughout the country and made in a wide range of styles. Sauvignon Blanc has recently surged in popularity to compete with New Zealand’s distinctive version, and Semillon is often utilized as its blending partner, or in the Hunter Valley, on its own to make complex, age-worthy whites. Riesling thrives in the cool-climate Clare and Eden Valleys. Sticky-sweet fortified wine Rutherglen Muscat is a beloved regional specialty of Victoria. Thanks to the country’s relatively agreeable climate throughout and the openness of its people, experimentation is common and ongoing, and there are a vast array of intriguing varieties to be found.

Other Red Blends

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With hundreds of red grape varieties to choose from, winemakers have the freedom to create a virtually endless assortment of blended wines. In many European regions, strict laws are in place determining the set of varieties that may be used, but in the New World, experimentation is permitted and encouraged. Blending can be utilized to enhance balance or create complexity, lending different layers of flavors and aromas. For example, a variety that creates a fruity and full-bodied wine would do well combined with one that is naturally high in acidity and tannins. Sometimes small amounts of a particular variety are added to boost color or aromatics. Blending can take place before or after fermentation, with the latter, more popular option giving more control to the winemaker over the final qualities of the wine.

UCW7323_2002 Item# 62315