Part of what is supposed to be a global ultrapremium wine brand, Oriel’s Sygnet Shiraz is a terrific effort, made with the help of John Duval (ex Penfolds). Bold aromas and flavors of red raspberries are underscored by hints of dark chocolate, vanilla and toasted coconut, and the wine is full-bodied and dense in the mouth, plushly textured and long on the finish…
This is a very rich 100% Cabernet. It’s not particularly Rutherford-esque, if that means anything anymore, but it is a full-bodied, varietally true wine, with deep flavors of blackberries and blackcurrants. The tannins and acids, however, are awkward, suggesting a good six years in the cellar.
Made by Louis Barruol of Saint-Cosme, this is a creamy-textured, dense blend of 70% Grenache, 20% Syrah and 10% Mourvèdre. It delivers plum-scented fruit accented by baking spices and licorice and balancing its tannic heft with ample length. Drink now–2018.
Here’s a nicely evolved Brunello with earthy tones that are often associated with the Sangiovese Grosso grape. You’ll get dried berry, blackberry, exotic spice and a playful touch of bacon fat that adds dimension and depth. The wine is thick and hearty on the palate, so try a pairing with lamb or game meat.
A robust, friendly Zinfandel, filled with the spices and briary fruits of this variety. Floods the mouth with blackberries, cherries, raspberries and something gamier, like mulberries, with intricacies of leather, tobacco, sandalwood and pepper. Delicious.
Made at the Sauternes classed growth Château Guiraud, this is part of a worldwide range of wines under the Oriel brand. As it matures, its marmalade flavors are mellowing, giving a rich nut and honey wine, with bursts of acidity and the potential for another few years’ aging.
With tough, astringent tannins and crisp acidity, this Syrah is pretty locked down, even though it’s nearly 4 years old. It has the generous fruit typical of Napa Valley, with polished black currant, black cherry, pomegranate and orange flavors, but those tannins put a straitjacket on the wine. Could come around in a few years, but it’s hard to tell.
A very nice Pinot Noir, rich and vibrant, that needs smoky, grilled meat or a nice slice of Gouda to show its stuff. Dry and crisp in acidity, its flavors of black cherries, grilled black raspberries and cedary oak flood the palate, leading to a long, spicy finish.