So many aspects of this wine appealed to me. It was the first time Andrew Thomas had used fruit from this vineyard planted in 1967. The vineyard was not maintained the best prior to getting his hands on it. No irrigation along with dodgy maintenance, the vines were made to struggle. The yield was small with tiny berries on the bunches concentrating the fruit to skin ratio producing a wine black appearance. Even Thommo admits, "It wasn't Hunter," referring to a typical Hunter Shiraz. But this point of difference makes it stand out even more resulting in power and finesse. A fantastic wine.
Some Hunter earthiness, chocolate pudding, black fruits and even a waft of country dirt road.
Fruit and oak in sync, there is some serious grunt on the palate with plenty of depth and complexity. Yet it oozes softness and elegance at the same time. Balanced well and then some. Fruit drives all the way through to a lengthy and moreish finish.
The label suggests, "Cellar with confidence." Definitely!
A Hunter beauty worth getting hold of. And as I say that, I can assure you the wine has been sold out. But after a sigh of disappointment, Thommo assures me that the 2010 Motel Block is a fraction off the 2009. Only a few cartons remain at the Hunter Valley Small Wine Makers Centre.
Who: Thomas Wines http://www.ThomasWines.com.au/
What: Shiraz (14.5% alc)
Where: Hunter Valley
How: Sold Out ($50)
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