2000 Penfolds "Grange" Shiraz South Australia

SKU #1015919 96 points James Halliday

 Good depth to the colour; seamless blackberry fruit and vanilla/cedar oak; abundant power and concentration; sultry blackberry, dark chocolate and spice; persistent but balanced tannins. Exceptional outcome for an ordinary vintage; obviously strict selection criteria used. Stained cork broke on extraction.  (3/2005)

93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Penfolds' renowned 2000 Grange is only the fifth vintage to be made from 100% Shiraz (the others being 1951, 1952, 1963, and 1999). It is also, atypically, 100% Barossa fruit. While it is not considered to be one of the great Granges, the 2000 exhibits outstanding potential, and is much more accessible than usual. One of the top wines I tasted from this vintage (which has had to take a back seat to subsequent years), its dense ruby/purple color is followed by a big, sweet nose of blackberries, cherries, chocolate, and earth. With decent acidity, ripe, silky tannin, superb intensity, wonderful equilibrium, and a more open-knit, softer, accessible style than usual, it can be drunk now or cellared for 15-16 years. While this is no wimpy wine, it is an ideal example for readers who are unwilling to invest the patience required for the big, blockbuster Granges. (RP)  (10/2005)

93 points Wine & Spirits

 Penfolds pulled off a meaty vintage of Grange in 2000: 100 percent Shiraz from Barossa Valley. The year was marked by an extremely hot, dry spell from January until March, and the resulting wine is so dense with extract that the stony tannin doesn't mitigate the thickness until tasted again a day later. By then, air has brought up the exotic spice of the tannin, and given a mineral lift to the dark, resinous fruit. This will need years to sort itself out, but it looks to be a sleek vintage of Grange when it does, probably by 2010 or '12.  (10/2005)

90 points Wine Enthusiast

 The nose offers date and cassis notes, while the palate deals more cassis, plus raspberry, earth and oak as it opens. Its flavors are juicy, and its tannins, delicate and textured (one reviewer actually likened it to a Rhône wine). Not as full, powerful or overwhelming as the wine can be, but enjoyable nonetheless.  (10/2005)

K&L Notes

Penfolds' Grange has been Australia's premier wine offering for decades and has won numerous accolades. With vintages that go back to the 1950s, Grange is highly sought after by collectors. It is even listed as a "Heritage Icon of South Australia."

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Price: $349.99

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Varietal:

Shiraz/Syrah

- One of France's noblest black grape varieties, Syrah is known for its intense and distinctive perfume reminiscent of briar fruit, tar, spice and black pepper and its firm structure. One of few black grape varietals frequently vinified on its own, the best examples of Syrah come from the Northern Rhône, particularly Hermitage, but also Côte-Rôtie, Cornas, Crozes-Hermitage and St-Joseph. These wines are very astringent in their youth, though some Crozes-Hermitage and St-Joseph can be enjoyed young, relatively speaking. Given the requisite patience, though, these wines can reveal amazing complexity and secondary fruit characteristics like plum and blackcurrant as well as subtle hints of smoke and flowers. In the Southern Rhône, Syrah is used to add structure and complexity to wines dominated by Grenache and complemented by Mourvèdre, like the more immediately drinkable Côte du Rhônes, as well as the long-lived wines of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. In recent years, plantings of Syrah have spread throughout the Languedoc-Roussillon where it is produced on its own or blended with other varietals. Outside of France, the most important Syrah growing country is easily Australia, where it is called Shiraz. Quality levels here depend greatly on yields and geography, and the wines range from bold, fruity and easy-drinking to intense and ageable, like the famed Penfolds Grange. Often bottled on its own, in Australia Syrah is also can be blended with Grenache and Mourvèdre, as in the Southern Rhône, and is increasingly combined with Cabernet Sauvignon. Syrah has also been steadily increasing in popularity in California, thanks to a group of advocates called the Rhône Rangers. Its most successful iterations come from the Central and Sonoma Coasts, where winemakers are pushing boundaries and creating some incredible wines. In recent years Syrah has also found a number of proponents in Washington State, which is definitely a region to watch for this variety.
Country:

Australia

- While it is true that the greatest strides in Australian winemaking have come in the last 30 years or so, commercial viticulture began as early as the 1820s and has developed uninterrupted ever since. The majority of the great wine regions are in the southeastern area of the continent, including Barossa Valley, Clare Valley, McLaren Vale, and Coonawarra in South Australia; Yarra Yarra Valley and Pyrenees in Victoria; and the Upper and Lower Hunter Valleys in New South Wales. Many of the wines from Southeastern Australia are based on Shiraz or Cabernet Sauvignon and various blends including Grenache and Mourvedre. In Western Australia, along the Margaret River, great strides are being made with Pinot Noir as well as Bordeaux-styled reds. There are also many world-class releases of Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc from the land Down Under, where Riesling also enjoys international acclaim. While many equate Aussie wines with “value,” there are more than a few extremely rare and pricey options, which never fail to earn the highest ratings from wine publications and critics throughout the world. View a list of bestselling items from Australia.
Sub-Region:

South Australia