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Bruce Hayes

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WTN: Graham Beck Shiraz-Cabernet Sauvignon 2003

by Bruce Hayes » Tue Apr 25, 2006 10:48 am

Western Cape, South Africa. Fifty-seven per cent Shiraz, 43 Cabernet.

Decanted.

Very dark purple color.

Odd nose of cigarette ash (and I don't smoke).

Rich cherry and raspberry fruit, peppery, chocolate, black licorice, fairly soft tannins providing a nice edge.

As we made our way through the decanter, drying tannin and woodiness became much more dominant and the fruit began to fade.

With further time, the cherry fruit came back somewhat, but the wine was still quite dry, lean and dusty.

Interesting.

Good buy at $12.95 Canadian.
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Re: WTN: Graham Beck Shiraz-Cabernet Sauvignon 2003

by Jenise » Tue Apr 25, 2006 2:14 pm

General question for you, Bruce: do you think that combining Cab and Syrah makes a more interesting wine than either varietal would be alone?
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: WTN: Graham Beck Shiraz-Cabernet Sauvignon 2003

by James Roscoe » Tue Apr 25, 2006 5:07 pm

Jenise,
Whenever I am tasting Australian wines, the blends always seem to come across better than the varietals. I especially enjoy the Rhone style GSM blends, but the cab-shiraz blends are okay. Having said that, I have none in my very small cellar.
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Re: WTN: Graham Beck Shiraz-Cabernet Sauvignon 2003

by Jenise » Tue Apr 25, 2006 5:33 pm

James, you seemed to have intuited what I was really thinking: that this blend (think Penfolds 389) seems to work so well in Australia, somehow getting the best of both, where I'll be darned if I've ever found an American blend of same that I didn't suffer from indistinction.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: WTN: Graham Beck Shiraz-Cabernet Sauvignon 2003

by Paul B. » Tue Apr 25, 2006 6:20 pm

Bruce, that truly sounds like a wine up my alley. Well, minus the stinky tobacco thing. But it did blow off after a while, did it?

The drying tannins and apparent gutsiness of the wine - not to mention the great price - are making me want to give it a try.
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Re: WTN: Graham Beck Shiraz-Cabernet Sauvignon 2003

by Bruce Hayes » Tue Apr 25, 2006 8:24 pm

Paul B. wrote:Bruce, that truly sounds like a wine up my alley. Well, minus the stinky tobacco thing. But it did blow off after a while, did it?

The drying tannins and apparent gutsiness of the wine - not to mention the great price - are making me want to give it a try.


Paul:

The wine was released on Jan. 21, 2006. Took a quick look at the LCBO search engine and it appears there are still a couple of dozen wines kicking around the province.

Good luck.

By the way, no the tobacco ash smell on the nose didn't blow off. It was very, very mild and only appeared later in the evening. Strangely enough, the wine had no nose for most of the night.
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Re: WTN: Graham Beck Shiraz-Cabernet Sauvignon 2003

by Bruce Hayes » Tue Apr 25, 2006 8:26 pm

Jenise wrote:General question for you, Bruce: do you think that combining Cab and Syrah makes a more interesting wine than either varietal would be alone?


Not sure I have an opinion on your question Jenise. I don't think I have tried enough Syrah-Cab blends to make a pronouncement. I know I do like Ozzie Shiraz-Grenache blends.

I bought this wine not based on the wine blend but based on the producer. I had previously bought some Graham Beck The Ridge Shiraz and was quite impressed.
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Re: WTN: Graham Beck Shiraz-Cabernet Sauvignon 2003

by James Roscoe » Tue Apr 25, 2006 9:27 pm

Jenise - I can't say that I've tried many American rhone blends. I know that they are made (Steve Edmunds for example), but I just don't see them here in the DC area. Maybe because they're not that exciting, I don't jump at them. In any event, I don't recall an American Cab.-Syrah blend. You'd think with all the juice they're squeezing, someone would have tried this in California. It would probably be a darn site better than a lot of the stuff they pass for cab. or syrah varietals. I suspect the general public would like them better too. That's my two cents.
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Re: WTN: Graham Beck Shiraz-Cabernet Sauvignon 2003

by Jenise » Tue Apr 25, 2006 11:27 pm

James, Washington state's making a number of cab-syrah blends, and living here I get to try a few. Haven't had one that justified not bottling/vinifying them separately.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov

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