Tuesday, May 10, 2005

John Duval Wines

John Duval Wines, Plexus 2003 ($39) - Barossa Valley; Shiraz, Grenache, Mourvedre (46%, 32%, 22%) I grabbed a six pack during a walk about in Cutting Edge's warehouse after sampling five Madeira's (more later about that expedition). They got twenty six-packs from the former winemaker of Penfold's Grange. The packaging is modern and clean.

Here is a blurb from another retailer:

The 2003 Plexus Shiraz Grenache Mourvedre is the most eagerly anticipated new wine release of the year. It's already a runaway winner before it even reaches the wine stores on March 1. Demand has been so keen that the Australian allocation has already been snapped up by wine distributors.
Wine stores report that buyers have been enquiring for some time to buy the first wine from the maestro. Mr Duval was Penfolds chief winemaker and maker of Penfolds Grange from 1986 until he resigned in mid-2002 after 28 years with the company. He was only the third winemaker of Penfolds Grange, regarded internationally as Australia's greatest wine.
His shock resignation came after the merger between Southcorp and Rosemount Wines in 2001. "I'm very pleased with the wine because there has been a lot of expectation," Mr Duval said. "The main one has been meeting my own expectations. I've been very nervous because I'm doing it for myself for the first time.

Here is one opinion from Parker's chat forum:

2003 John Duval Wines Plexus (Barossa Valley Shiraz, Grenache and Mourvedre): An explosion of ripe black, red and purple fruits envelops the nostrils. Quite often after such a power packed punch you expect a wave of vanilla and coconut oak but not with this baby. There is a touch of "Northern Rhonesque" passionfruit skins and the well seasoned French oak injects a little cedar, spice and toast. The palate is dense and juicy but not jammy and fruit and oak is in perfect harmony. There is a creamy texture with enough savoury characters to ensure the wines value as a food partner. As for the length, those inclined to time the finish had better put some new batteries in their stopwatch.

I guess he liked it. I did also.

Was a little confused on first opening (the wine, not me), but showed a Grenache nose and lots of fruit. Two hours later, after I returned from dinner, it had smoothed out and taken on a refined elegance, but still very young. Needs to age but shows great promise. I think I will pick up a few more six packs before they are all gone.


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