Friday, May 13, 2011

Penfold's Grange 1998

The first time I tasted Grange, I almost guessed it blind. I guessed an Aussie Cab/Shiraz and it turned out to be an Aussie Shiraz/Cab (that particular vintage still included a small percentage of Cabernet Sauvignon). That was quite awhile ago now. I tried Lafite for the first time ever that evening as well.

Incredibly dark, broody core with brushed ruby edges. Touch of soupiness to it. Not the clearest wine in the world.

The nose is pipe tobacco drenched in cassis and blueberry. Cedar-like and almost old world-y but for the sense of warmth that comes through. There's quite a lot of peppery spice and exotic herb action as well.

Gripping, bright berry and plum fruit that tugs the tongue back as the tannins, still with a touch of edge to them, scrape it clean. The fruit isn't stewed, but it is in that mid-point between berry and stone. The acidity is still fresh, holding everything quite well and giving the wine youth now and legs for the future. There's a lovely softness there too.

I feel its weight though. After a small tasting glass, there is a heaviness that lingers. It tastes delicious but after its finish there is a weight, as though tasting it and processing it required a Herculean effort. Big wine. Possibly too big for me.


Tasted 27/04/2011

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