Saturday, December 22, 2007

Godolphin Shiraz / Cabernet Sauvingon Barossa Valley 2005


We had the opportunity to do some blind tasting with Tex and Gidget at Marche Bacchus and once again owner Jeff Wyatt did not disappoint us. Jeff informed us that our first wine was rated 93 points. As we watched Jeff pour this wine we and suggested by color in the glass it was an Australian wine most likely a blend with Shiraz. In the glass it was red-purple in color and medium bodied. The lack of an age ring suggested is was perhaps a 2005 vintage. The nose gave us hints of casiss and tannins then finished very smooth with medium tannins. Jeff came back and showed us the
Godolphin Shiraz Cabernet Sauvignon 2005, Barossa Valley. We felt good about this one as we hit it right on the nose!
This wine was a blend of 80% Dry-grown Barossa Valley 85 year-old Shiraz vines & 20% Dry grown Barossa Valley 60 year-old Cabernet Sauvignon vines. It was fermented in 1 ton open fermenters , hand plunged 3 times daily and then matured for 14 months in 100% new oak of which 20% is American and 80% French (70% hogsheads & 30% barriques) and was bottled unfiltered. This wine was amazing and the favorite of the day by far.
Because we did so well on the first wine Jeff decided to be tougher on us the second time around. In the glass this wine had a deep purple color and medium body and not much of an age ring. The nose gave us some old world characteristics with very little fruit at first. The wine opened up after about 15-20 minuets and Gidget described it as a "party in a glass" and was right. Black plums and spice aromas were prevalent on the nose . The palate was consistent with the nose and finished with black fruit shaped by sharp acidity soft Tannins.
Jeff showed this to be a Palacios "Pétalos" Bierzo 2005. We were everywhere from Italy to France on this wine. We had never had a Bierzo so we decided to learn more about it.
The Bierzo Denominación de Origen is in the northeast of the province of Léon Spain and covers about 3,000 km². The area consists of numerous small valleys in the mountainous part (Alto Bierzo) and of a wide, flat plain (Bajo Bierzo). The DO covers 23 municipalities including the largest town of the area, Villafranca del Bierzo. he soils in the mountains consist of a mixture of fine elements, quartz and slate. The vineyards are planted mainly on humid, dark soil which is slightly acidic and low in carbonates. The wines produced under the Bierzo DO must be made only with the varieties that are authorised by the Consejo Regulador (Regulatory Council). Red grapes: Mencia, Garnacha Tintorera, (experimental: Tempranillo, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon) White grapes: Doña Blanca, Godello, Palomino, (experimental: Malvasía, Chardonnay, Gewurtztraminer) The experimental varieties can only be used for crianza and reserva wines, and may not comprise more than 15%.
The climate of this region is very interesting. It has a special micro climate which is beneficial for viticulture. The area is similar to the climate of Galicia with regard to humidity and rainfall, but is also similar to the hot, dry climate of Castile. The low altitude also helps to prevent late frosts and means that the grape harvest is usually about one month earlier than in Castile. This special area of Spain is remarkable for its climate diversity and is well known for its native Spanish varietals.

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Elaine and Scott

Elaine and Scott
Elaine and Scott