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There is an article by Harvey on the website right now commenting on the increased use of viognier in Aussie Shiraz.

Do you all like this style? IMO, this is a good move for Aussie shiraz if they want my dollars... the only bottlings I bother to try anymore are those w/ some viognier in them. It seems to give the wines some subtlety.

LJ
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quote:
Originally posted by carriedca:


Maybe adding viognier is the way to go for Ozzie shiraz.


How about skipping the Shiraz altogether and giving us some damn good complex Viognier?
Don't get me wrong, there are lots of excellent Aussie Shiraz, but after awhile they all taste like, well... Aussie Shiraz (with few $$$$ exceptions). How much of Shiraz can one person have? Confused
Some of the SV blends can be terrific but the problem with many of them is that they turn wine into an apricot dominant wine that is revoltingly sweet.

Whilst may people do like the Laughing Magpie, I am not one of them. If you want to see what a great SV belnd is like, try Torbreck Run Rig or thier The Decendants, Clonakilla, Yalumba Hand Picked SV, Heathcoate Winery Mail Coach, Standish Wine Co The Relic, Yarra Yarra Shiraz. These wines are at varying price points and are examples of wines that have (reasonably) subtle Viognier added.
quote:
Originally posted by TORB:
Some of the SV blends can be terrific but the problem with many of them is that they turn wine into an apricot dominant wine that is revoltingly sweet.

Whilst may people do like the Laughing Magpie, I am not one of them. If you want to see what a great SV belnd is like, try Torbreck Run Rig or thier The Decendants, Clonakilla, Yalumba Hand Picked SV, Heathcoate Winery Mail Coach, Standish Wine Co The Relic, Yarra Yarra Shiraz. These wines are at varying price points and are examples of wines that have (reasonably) subtle Viognier added.


Agreed that RunRig and Descendents are great wines, but I'd much rather pay USD35 for Laughing Magpie than USD85-140 for the Torbreck.
quote:
Originally posted by haggis:
Agreed that RunRig and Descendents are great wines, but I'd much rather pay USD35 for Laughing Magpie than USD85-140 for the Torbreck.


Prices in Oz are
Laughing Magpie $23 (case buy)
The Decendants $125
Run Rig $225

So we are not talking about a multiplier of 2.5 between the LM and the Torbreck; we have a 5 times multiplier for the Decendants and its 10 times for the Run Rig.
quote:
Originally posted by TORB:
Some of the SV blends can be terrific but the problem with many of them is that they turn wine into an apricot dominant wine that is revoltingly sweet.

Whilst may people do like the Laughing Magpie, I am not one of them. If you want to see what a great SV belnd is like, try Torbreck Run Rig or thier The Decendants, Clonakilla, Yalumba Hand Picked SV, Heathcoate Winery Mail Coach, Standish Wine Co The Relic, Yarra Yarra Shiraz. These wines are at varying price points and are examples of wines that have (reasonably) subtle Viognier added.


I agree with everything TORB says. My only additional comment is that the S/V blend is very new to Oz and I some of the manufacturers are on the learning curve, and I expect S/V blends to be better across the board in 3 or 4 years time.
quote:
Originally posted by TORB:
quote:
Originally posted by haggis:
Agreed that RunRig and Descendents are great wines, but I'd much rather pay USD35 for Laughing Magpie than USD85-140 for the Torbreck.


Prices in Oz are
Laughing Magpie $23 (case buy)
The Decendants $125
Run Rig $225

So we are not talking about a multiplier of 2.5 between the LM and the Torbreck; we have a 5 times multiplier for the Decendants and its 10 times for the Run Rig.


That's my point: I can drink that cheery bird more often that the Torbreck (as much as I'd like to be able to regularly drink a Scottish-named wine!).
I haven't read the article but some clarification. The practice of combining Viognier and Syrah started in the Northern Rhone, Cote Rotie in particular. Notice I said 'combining'. In Cote Rotie Viognier was traditionally co-planted with Syrah and picked at the same time. The grapes where then ferminted together.

The legal limit in Cote Rotie is 20% Viognier. For many years this was simply called a 'dodge' by the wine press. A way for the local growers to get away with adding the cheaper Viognier and not having to replant. Much of this type of stuff goes on in Italy where all kinds of inferior grapes are allowed to be mixed in the fields in a political gift to growers.

In the 1980's Guigal came out with the La, La's and La Turque in particular had Viognier. The conventional wisdom began to change and winemakers explored what Viognier was brining to the blend. The term "co-factors" began to be used and Viognier was credited with locking in deeper color in Syrah and in giving a lift to floral flavors. Bringing out violet in particular from the Syrah as well as adding some peach and apricot notes from the Viognier.

Many insist the benefits of Viognier are only possible with co-fermintation. They say that simply adding the Viognier does not produce the floral lift and deeper color, only adds the apricot and peach of Viognier. Torb, Pauly or Aussie probably know more than I but I believe most Aussie Shiraz is blended not co-ferminted.

Personally I really like the wines that are co-ferminted. I had a 2002 Lagier Meredith last night for instance, that had deep color and a nice violet note to go with meaty blackberry, iron, spicy pepper and provencial herbs. IT's more subtle to me than those that have been blended.

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