Wine: D’Arenberg The Stump Jump Shiraz.
Region: McLaren Vale, South Australia
In the glass: Stump Jump Shiraz is a deep brooding blackish-red in color with streaks of purple and fuchsia going out into an immensely purplish red rim with monster viscosity, probably because of the relative alcohol content.
On the nose: It has big, opulent, forward and concentrated black fruit, black cherries, creamy oak with vanilla notes and some alcohol, coffee grounds, earthy minerals, cedar box and sweet chewing tobacco.
On the palate: It is rich with concentrated, but too not extracted black fruit, plums, jammy blackberry and tasty, juicy sort of characteristics. The midpalate is well-balanced with powerful, but subtle tannins and spicy undertones with some aniseed and phenolic compounds as well as cherries jubilee on the finish. It’s really a fabulous effort from this famous producer.
Odds and ends: The winery d’Arenberg is famous for its quirky names as well as its wines, such as the highly rated The Money Spider and The Dead Arm. Its Osborn vineyards were first planted in the 1890s and now total about 150 acres of vines. The Stump Jump is a blend and style that has its roots in the Rhone Valley in “Cote Rotie,” where white viognier is grown alongside the red shiraz in the vineyards and hence picked and vinified together to create a highly perfumed red wine. This is a superb choice for dinners this time of the year, when they tend to be heavier. It received a 90 point rating from the Wine Spectator, and at less than $9, is a tremendous value. It is an easy-to-open-and-drink sort of wine and should be delicious with roasted lamb or chops, and can be consumed through 2015.
Gil Lempert-Schwarz’s wine column appears Wednesdays. Write him at P.O. Box 50749, Henderson, NV 89016-0749, or e-mail him at email@example.com.