2014 Gartelmann "Wilhelm' Shiraz
NAME: This wine has been named after Jorg Gartelmann’s Uncle Wilhelm.
VINEYARDS: The grapes were grown at Denman in the Upper Hunter Valley
TASTING NOTES: Deep ruby garnet in colour, it has a nose rich in cherries and blackberries with the merest hint of sandalwood At 13.8% alcohol it is no shrinking violet, yet the warmth on the palate is happily balanced with ripe fruit flavours, invigorating acid and velvet smoky-wood tannins.
The finish is unmistakeably “Hunter Valley” with a compote of chariness, aniseed and dark berries. As a regular part of your weekly wine quota, you will no doubt guzzle this with pre-dinner snacks, cooking dinner titbits, actually eating dinner, and then after dinner sit-back and sip.
FOOD MATCHING: Think BBQ lamb, fried haloumi with pesto... this wine will cope with just about anything (except maybe very subtle white fish).
CELLARING: Enjoy from 2018, great drinking from 2020 or cellar to 2024.
VINTAGE: The Hunter 2014 vintage was one to reward the lucky ones. A dry November and December with average temperatures were helpful, then a very wet January with earlier February rains, easing off a week before harvest.
I’m inclined to think this is not a long term cellaring wine because the fruit seems to be the main player which will appeal to many, including me, but there’s enough structure to indicate it will reward those who put some away. I think it’s more for enjoying now and believe me, it is most enjoyable.