Region: Hunter Valley
Background: ‘Alexander Munro’ Shiraz is our flagship wine and made from the best parcel of shiraz fruit we receive each year.
Only wine from the very best Hunter vintages will be kept to cellar and re-release at 8—10 years of age. The 1998 vintage was the first vintage as an Aged-Release.
Fruit Source: Situated in Pokolbin, the ‘Ivanhoe’ vineyard is the Shiraz source for this wine and has been consistently our best Shiraz fruit source since 2001. The vines have an average age of 40 years, with some much older and are dry-land grown.
Fermentation: Hand picked fruit was crushed into open vats and plunged twice daily to ensure maximum extraction. The wine was then pressed out straight into French oak of which 40 % was new.
Maturation: After 20 months of maturation the wine was lightly egg white fined and then bottled with minimal filtration.
Winemaker’s comments: 2003 was a severe drought vintage which favoured the Shiraz grape in the Hunter by keeping already controlled yields even lower. It was crucial to harvest at the correct time. On one hand, we had to ensure physiological ripeness was achieved, but more importantly, not allowing the fruit to become over-ripe and lose the varietal character of Shiraz.
Tasting note: A mid crimson in the glass; a mix of black fruits, earth, spice and a hint of licorice and chocolate on the nose. The palate is full to medium-bodied; lush and rich with blackberry and cedary oak. This wine has an elegant long, savoury and balanced finish.
Cellaring estimate: This wine has all the characteristics that are required for further long term cellaring.
Decanting is highly recommended prior to serving to allow the wine to be at its best.
What the experts say:
“An aged release from Meerea Park. It was a big wine on release … and a big wine it remains. Opened with some oyster shell reductive stink but then kaboom -chocolate and licorice, some mint, earth, blackberry and cedar oak on a full bodied flavour packed palate. There’s a little toffee and raisin sweetness but it’s earthy and savoury too. Firm tannins are neatly tucked into mounds of flesh, though it’s shapely with a long expansive finish. I’d guess it will just about live forever (like a Lindies 3110), or until the screwcap rusts..”
Rated : 95 Points
Gary Walsh – The Winefront – August 2011
“What a cracker Hunter red this is! Deep purple in the glass, it beguiles with scents of berry pastille and bouquet garni. Big, intense Satsuma plum flavour glides onto the front of the palate, and cassis, dark chocolate and peppermint fruit characters meld with savoury oak on the middle palate. Earthy tannins show at the finish.” Five Stars!
John Lewis – Newcastle Herald – 17th December 2011
The 2003 “Alexander Munro” Shiraz Aged Release is medium to deep garnet-colored with a touch of brick in the rim. It offers a wonderfully mature Shiraz fragrance of kirsch, warm mulberries, potpourri, sandalwood, smoked bacon and baking spices with whiffs of black truffles and olives. Full-bodied and opulently fruited on the palate, the generous, evolved fruit flavors are supported with a good backbone of enlivening acid and velvety tannins, finishing long and spicy. Drink it now to 2017+.
Lisa Perotti – Brown – The Wine Advocate #200