2016 Rabbit & Spaghetti Shiraz Iconic Shiraz, Australia, Barossa Valley, Wine Revview

This was a very popular wine among friends.  Inky purple in color. The nose has black raspberries, roasted herbs, slight roasted meats and black pepper.  On the palate, juicy black raspberry fruit.  Slightly jammy.  A bit sweet.  "Old school" Australian Shiraz but within reason.  Not over blown for the style.  This will need big and/or spicy food.  It also works very nice as a cocktail wine.  Available at Nakedwines.com.

2017 Or Haganuz Rosé Amuka Naburia, Israel, Galilee, Wine Review

Salmon pink in color.  The nose is very nice with watermelon, slight celery note and with air, a bit or rhubarb.  Not under ripe though.  On the palate, there are some slight cherry notes on the attack.  Watermelon on the mid-palate and finishing with some strawberry notes.  Not a ton of acidity but some.  Works fine with lighter foods but make a great refreshing drink on the patio.  There is some complexity here as well.  This is an equal blend of Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Shiraz and Mourvedre.  It is dry.  Retails for under $20 making this well priced.  Probably should be drunk by 2020.  

2010 Mollydooker Enchanted Path, Australia, McClaren Vale, Wine Review

This is a classic big Australian export wine.  Its a blend of Shiraz and Cabernet and really goes well on a cold winter's day.  Inky purple in color.  The nose has some black cherry cough syrup, black raspberries and black pepper.  On the palate, this is ripe with black cherry and black raspberry fruit.  It is warming but not hot.  Nice texture.  Tons of fruit.  Its about pleasure not contemplation.  Long finish.  Certainly not for every one, but I like it at the right time.  

2011 Mollydooker Shiraz Blue Eyed Boy, Australia, Wine Review

This was opened at a blind tasting and I think the entire table guessed correctly what it was.  Certainly a distinctive wine.  Purple in color.  The nose has black olives, green olives and black cherries.  Nice enough.  On the palate, this is sweet and almost cloying.  Black raspberry fruit.  I had not had it in about 4 years and it hasn't held up that well (or it is in a bad spot right now).  It is certainly drinkable but given the price...  Some liked it more than I.  


What's the difference between Petite Syrah, Syrah, and Shiraz?

QUESTION: What's the difference between Petite Syrah, Syrah, and Shiraz? Syrah and Shiraz are the same grape. It tends to be labeled as Shiraz in Australia and Syrah in the rest of the world (remembering that in France it is more likely to have a geographic name such as St. Joseph or Cote Rotie). There are in fact different strains of Syrahs around the world and often in the same vineyard.

Red Wine Pairing Suggestions for Grilled Steak

Summertime is the season of backyard barbecues and grilled steak. IntoWine.com asked our panel of wine experts to recommend a red wine to pair with that summertime staple, grilled steak: When I have a grilled steak , it’s a special occasion. The meat itself is a treat, so the wine doesn’t need to be anything complicated or expensive—just solid, red and balanced, with good body and acidity to stand up to the entree. A Bordeaux or one of the more balanced California Cabernets or Bordeaux blends always works well, as does a solid Merlot. The advantage of a Merlot is that it doesn’t need all the bottle age that most Cabs do to be food friendly. California Merlots also tend to be a good value, and some of my favorites, which are ideal with steak, come from A. Rafanelli, Castello di Amorosa, Darioush, Peju Province and Robert Keenan.

Do Northern Rhone Syrahs Have to Break the Bank?

The Rhone Report: About Rhone and Rhone-Style Wines and Winemakers is part of an ongoing series. The classic red wines of the Northern Rhone Valley are some of the world’s greatest. Hermitage, Côte Rôtie and Cornas reds are the finest expressions of Syrah on earth. But the best of them have gotten to be very expensive, especially in American dollars. Recent vintages of Hermitage from Jean-Louis Chave are now more than $200 per bottle (and his scarce, top cuvee, Cathelin, is over $1,000). Guigal’s Côte Rôtie La Landonne, La Mouline and La Turque are nearly $250 per bottle, and even the Guigal Côte Rôtie Brune et Blond bottling is over $75.

Australian Sparkling Shiraz: Holiday Spirit from Down Under

Have you booked your ticket home for the Holidays yet? If not, you might want to get on that. Have you bought Auntie Ingrid her extra special Christmas gift? If not, you should get on that too. And what will you be serving at that special family dinner? You know you’ve got a reputation to live up to, and they’re going to expect nothing less than a little known, concentrated, crowd pleaser. Mom has the turkey covered, and your sister knows her way around a mashed potato. But you’re in charge of the wine.