Tapanappa Whalebone Vineyard 2004 Cabernet Shiraz

Author: Andrew Wood
Review Date: Jun 2010

The other wine released under the Tapanappa label (see previous review of the 2005 Chardonnay) is a blend of 70% cabernet, 20% shiraz and 10% cabernet franc. The fruit is sourced from a vineyard planted in 1974 in Wrattonbully (north of Coonawarra). After years of championing Coonawarra cabernet, it’s hardly surprising that Croser has gone back to the uniquely Australian blend of cabernet/shiraz, after all, the early vintages of Petaluma were cab/shiraz blends, some of which are still drinking wonderfully today (the 1979 in particular).

Love the purity of the nose, crystal clear aromas of black cherry, plum, violets and damp earth burst from the glass. The supporting oak oozes sex appeal and is amazingly discreet considering the wine was aged for eighteen months in 100% new tight-grained French. Silky-smooth in the mouth, the wines rolls down the palate effortlessly. Sweet squishy dark berries and roasted oak have integrated beautifully with the fine, powdery tannins and bright vein of acidity. Aromatic mid-palate, yet finishes savoury and grippy. Brilliantly structured, the firm cabernet tannins that run down the sides of the palate have been toned down by the addition of the shiraz to the point you hardly notice them. Good drinking now, but will be sensational with some age on it (anywhere between five to ten years).

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