I've read some conflicting opinions on the 97' Penfolds RWT and would like to know if it's worth picking up @$48/btl with a case discount.

On the same vein, how about the 97' Grange @$155? Seems overpriced for the ratings.

Thanks in advance!!
Original Post
From the Penfolds web page....
RWT Barossa Valley Shiraz 1997
In the Penfolds tradition of trial and innovation our winemakers embarked on a project in 1995 titled 'RWT' - meaning 'Red Winemaking Trial' - to create a new Australian Shiraz integrating the rich, generous flavours of Barossa Valley Shiraz
with the finesse of tightly-grained French oak. The result is a fine wine of great elegance and depth of flavour. RWT is second only to Grange in the Penfolds Shiraz hierarchy, although the two
wines are stylistically different. RWT expresses Shiraz more openly than Grange. This is partly a function of the grapes themselves and partly a result of maturation in French oak, rather than stronger, sweeter-flavoured American oak. RWT is
opulent and voluptuous, and fleshy where Grange is muscular.
Vineyard Region Barossa Valley
Vintage Conditions
Excellent rainfall in September and October and a warm March and April produced excellent Shiraz fruit in the Barossa Valley.
Grape Variety Shiraz (Syrah)
Maturation
12 months in French oak (50 per cent new).
Winemaker Comments: John Duval
Colour Deep crimson red.
Nose This is a unique aromatic expression of the Barossa Valley
- perfumed fruit with violet-like florals, dried mixed fruit and exotic spices. Berry fruit nuances rise above cedary French oak.
Palate
This has the hallmarks of a great Penfolds red wine -superb structure, excellent oak integration, great palate weight and rich fruit. The sweet, rich and generous dark berried Shiraz flavours make a strong, clear statement.
Pronounced savoury, cold roasted meat flavours combine with stylish, integrated oak and velvety tannins to promote a long, persistent finish.
Wine Analysis
Alc/Vol: 14.5%
Acidity: 6.60g/L
pH: 3.52
Last Tasted 27 Jul 2000
Peak Drinking
Now - 2015
Food Matches
Ideally suited to Duck &
Game, Beef, Cheese
Rigga,

I've had this wine on two occasions.

The first time I tried it (in April '01), it was phenomenal. A gushing cherry fruit bomb that had a 45+ second finish. Tasted it in a a "Great Red Wines" seminar. We all rushed over to Sam's at 8:30 PM to snatch the remainder of the bottles off the shelf before the store closed. That's how good it was. 95+ points.

On the other hand, I had it again last month in a blind tasting and it did not show well. Here's the link:

http://web8.winespectator.com/ubb/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=1;t=003247

I will say that $48 is an excellent price for this wine. The lowest I'd seen it was $55, but usually it's around $62 at Sam's.

My recommendation is to purchase a bottle and try it before buying a case. Or buy the '97 or '98 Elderton Command instead at comparable prices.

Hope this is helpful and not making your decision murkier.

Cheers,

Otis

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