Blue Pyrenees Shiraz 2008 (Pyrenees, Vic)
$18, Screwcap, 14%
For $18 you certainly get plenty of wine from Blue Pyrenees. In fact, the Cabernet sibling of this wine took out the trophy for Best Commercial Red at the 2010 Sydney Wine Show, so the runs are on the board (so to speak).
If you had to sum up this wine in a single word it would be 'thick'. Thick in a Central Victorian, heroically rich way, though this appears to be a bit softer than in previous vintages (Viognier?)with a solid flow of deep, mouthfilling boysenberry flavours.
What's absent in this wine though is the trademark Blue Pyrenees mint/eucalypt - which most consumers struggled with - instead replaced with some background hamminess, along with cool climate cardamon and pepper varietal characters. It's a move that will only help sales, as that character is divisive to say the least.
Interestingly, whilst it is an unquestionable thick wine, the real richness is all concentrated on the middle palate, with everything falling away through the finish to reveal minimal tannins and a rather sweet aftertaste (Viognier?).
In the wash up, I think I preferred the old style, 'get stuffed', dry and tannic style of ye olde Blue Pyrenees reds as opposed to the soft, rich and generous wine now in front of me. Given the price here though, it's still a shitload of wine for $18, even if it's not my sort of wine. 16.5/88