From Victoria, this inky Cab offers mineral and pure, densely packed cassis and blackberry fruit. It’s spicy, racy and full-throttle, but by no means overextracted or mushy; just the opposite, in fact. On the finish, bright layered fruit is the opening act followed by oak.
The Bendigo region of Victoria isn’t very well known, but Balgownie does good work there with Cabernet Sauvignon. The 2008 displays aromas of mint, cassis and smoke alongside fully ripe flavors of cassis and chocolate. The tannins are firm and a bit drying on the finish, but the chocolaty richness of the fruit shows through. Drink 2013–2020.
Full bodied and richly textured, this is a lush, velvety Shiraz that nevertheless seems to possess enough structure to age successfully. Cassis, molasses and vanilla all play roles in the aroma and flavor profiles, while a mocha note chimes in on the long finish. Drink now–2025.
Right out of the bottle, this wine brims with blackberry and cassis aromas and flavors, but with air, it takes on more earthy, briary—even nutty, as is the case with the nose—notes. Has a chalky feel and medium body; restrained and food friendly. Imported by Old Bridge Cellars.
Rather restrained, this is a dark, concentrated wine built for some time in the cellar. It’s got Bordeaux-like structure in its crisp acids and firm tannins, but clean, New World cassis flavors tinged with vanilla and cedary oak. Drink 2010–2015.
This carries a savory note of cured meat on the nose, married to juicy berry flavors. It’s a style akin to the Shiraz from the Eden Valley, mingling bright fruit character with plenty of meaty spice.
Bendigo is a subappellation of Victoria, approximately 100 miles north of Melbourne. This medium-bodied Shiraz is quaffable, even though its price may not encourage spontaneous purchase. Blueberries and sweet cream waft from the nose, while the fruit on the palate is redder, and more tart than sweet. —D.M.
Rubbery and tar-like at first, and those aromas just wouldn’t loosen their grip. On the palate, there’s some pleasant plum-like fruit and hints of espresso and asphalt. Tight, and needs time or substantial aeration to come around.