Gregory Dal Piaz

Location: New York, NY

Editor at Snooth Happy to answer all your wine related questions.

Australian Shiraz $16-$20

Rank Wine Rating Price
1 Mitolo Mclaren Vale Jester Shiraz (2009)
Comments: Pretty intense on the nose with a classic array of grilled meat, pepper, spice, blackberry and plum, with a touch of a coffee top note. Just a bit thick on the palate, yet showing both density and freshness. This is a touch sweet with rich blackberry flavors that are a touch jammy, backed up by notes of grilled beef, pepper, vanilla and some nice astringent apple peel notes. The finish is a bit short, though brisk and clean, with attractive floral and plummy inner mouth aromatics and a long spice/cocoa note on the finale. Quintessential Shiraz. 92 pts
Average price: $18.99 from 4 stores
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2 Mount Langi Ghiran Cliff Edge Shiraz (2006)
Comments: Pretty intense on the nose. An initial blast of floral aromas is backed up by notes of raw wood spice, green olives, black pepper and black currant fruit. This is rich and very well balanced on entry. The acidity and tannins are finely integrated into the fruit which is intense yet shows a sense of coolness. Nice flavors of burnt sugar, maple syrup and cedar accent the blackberry tones, and there’s a nice peachy/apricot tone at the core here. Seems like this might have some Viognier in it? Refined and so well balanced, this extends over a relatively long finish with fine fresh currant and blackberry tones, ending with a touch of wood spice. 91pts
Previously available for $14.97
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3 Château Tanunda Grand Barossa Classic Crisp Dry White (2008)
Comments: A lot of power on the nose with intense aromas of peppercorn and liquory black raspberry fruit, with hints of vanilla, mint, bay leaf and plum. A touch thick on the palate though not at all sticky or clumsy, this delivers a rich mouthful of slightly dried/roasted fruit wrapped up in ribbons of vanilla, toasty oak and pomegranate seed. There’s enough fruit here to cover the structure, which while not huge, is still firm and well balanced, poking out a bit on the finish. Really does have a touch of elegance showing deft wine making. The finish is long, complex, burly and earthy. A very fine example. 91 pts
Average price: $15.49 from 9 stores
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4 Innocent Bystander Shiraz Blend Shiraz Viognier (2007)
Comments: Floral and intense on the nose with a touch of reduction highlighting an asphalt undertone. Plenty of smoky oak, white pepper and violet notes add complexity. Soft and full on entry, a spine of acid does perk up on the mid-palate. There is ore reduction evident on the palate here, but some air helps to clear it up, revealing finely rendered blackberry fruit wrapped in a oak and supported by bright floral and pink peppercorn tones. The blackberry fruit pops on the back end and works in tandem with the subtle oak treatment on the moderately long finish. 90 pts
Previously available for $24.89
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5 Wirra Wirra Catapult Shiraz Viognier Mclaren Vale (2008)
Comments: This is showing quite precise aromatics, decidedly floral and savory. Cracked peppercorn and licorice accents over plummy, jammy fruit are paired with vanilla and wood spice. A bit surprising on entry with a rather light, fresh feel and underpinned with dry, slightly grainy tannins. The early flavors are noticeably influenced by the Viognier here, though by mid-palate, the peach fades into a core of blackberry and plum fruit, showing flashes of graphite, coconut and light note of peppercorn. Modest if slightly dry tannins emerge again on the moderately long finish which shows good fruit and a more pronounced toasty oak quality. 89 pts
Average price: $17.49 from 1 store
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6 De Bortoli Family Series Shiraz (2008)
Comments: This is fairly herbal on the nose. Nicely complex and fresh with notes of tobacco, coffee grounds, bacon fat and white pepper, with a touch of VA. Rather broad and open knit in the mouth, shows bright, earthy red berry fruit with some gentle vanilla and spice notes rounding out the mid-palate. The finish is rather crisp, bright and focused, showing fine persistence of red fruit. Atypical for sure, but this does have a little core of sweetness that supports the relatively funky flavors. Finishes with a red berry jam and bacon note. 88 pts
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7 Wyndham Estate George Wyndham Founder's Reserve Shiraz South Australia (2007)
Comments: This is a touch volatile on the nose with a lot of grapey, wild berry Jolly Rancher type fruit. There’s some vanilla here as well, adding to the candied tone. Soft in the mouth, this shows some drying tannins and is very broad with creamy berry fruit. There’s a touch of freshening green spice on the back end and the acid does emerge from the fruit fairly well, but this can’t lose the candied fruit flavors. The finish is drying and toasty, and fairly short with a little heat. Easy to drink. 86 pts
Previously available for $22.99
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