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Fairbank' Syrah Bendigo Vic 2004
Penfolds' chief winemaker, Peter Gago, put the wine in the same league as the 'wonderful' 1990 and 1996 vintages. Not only has Gago praised the 2004 Grange but the average ranking by critics globally is 99 points so far. This really is a stupendous wine that will cellar for at least 2 decades.
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External Reviews for Fairbank' Syrah Bendigo Vic
Not quite as broad and generous as riper vintages, but tremendously classy, offering smoky, earthy blackberry, plum and currant flavors that compete effectively against cedary oak on the long finish. The flavors gain with each sip, fanning out impressively. It's tight now, but it could age beautifully. Best after 2009.
Powerful aromas of cassis, blackberry and bitter cherry are complemented by exotic notes of smoky peat, pipe tobacco, violet oil and fresh blood. Deeply concentrated cherry skin and blackcurrant flavors are underscored by a strong mineral quality, wi... Stephen Tanzers IWC. A Syrah wine from South Australia in Australia. 2004 Penfolds Grange 1500ml
A classic Grange, this '98 is recognizable for the vastness of its flavor, for the inimitable balance of explosive elegance. The lithe, potent, athletic build is right there when the bottle is first opened, and the power of the wine just continues to expand. The deep well of old-vine fruit is black, faceted with fig and date maturity, slowly fading into the flavor of the soil. Or is it the texture of the soil, gripping and fresh, as the wine turns and turns again, showing provocative glints and glimpses of black? Hold onto this wine, as it will need a decade to show itself and two to show its best.
Though the nose on this wine is still somewhat closed, it's still remarkable. Individual notes (apart from eucalyptus and toast) aren't discernible; instead, it's an intense, penetrating sensation that fills the nose. Vanilla and coffee flavors are sumptuous foils to rich blackberries on the palate, which is muscular and plush as all get-out. Finishes long, with big but soft tannins. We can't wait to revisit it in 10-15 years, when the gems that are locked up tight now will sparkle.
This dark purple-colored wine exhibits notes of sweet plum, blackberry, and cassis intermixed with some licorice, chocolate, and espresso. It is a blend of 94% Shiraz and 6% Cabernet Sauvignon that tips the scales at 14+% alcohol. The wine is layered, unctuously textured, full-bodied with tremendous intensity, moderately high tannin, and a 40-second finish. The wine needs a good 4-5 years of cellaring. Anticipated maturity: 2006-2025. This Grange should ultimately merit a higher score when it is closer to its plateau of drinkability.
Virtually undeveloped, a huge, compacted Shiraz that feels like sucking on a stone of tannin, this nearly gives away its identity as Grange in a blind tasting. In a great vintage like '96, few other wines combine the explosive power and dense compaction Penfolds achieves in this selection of old-vines Shiraz. Tasting it now is more an intellectual pleasure, prying apart the layers of herbs, forest scents, bold fruit and tannin to understand its form, the wine remaining aloof and distant, like a sunrise over the horizon waiting to burst into flames. As tight as they may be, the flavors last for over a minute, the extreme spice warming every pore of the mouth, shedding jasmine and white pepper light across an expanse of dark, impenetrable shiraz. A classic Grange, this will likely come into its own at fifteen to twenty years of age.
Dense ruby/purple to the edge, with a bouquet of blackberries, mulberries, and floral-like aromas, and medium to full body, the 1999 has an acid punch but also tremendous layers of fruit and extract. Not massive, but elegant and nicely layered, it requires another 2-3 years of cellaring, and should last for 12-15 years.