2012 Maglieri Shiraz

A valuable Australian Shiraz, one that climbed with us up the Blue Ridge Mountains to our little cabin hideaway on the outskirts of Newland. The Maglieri was an online purchase–it sounded delicious, was the right bit of affordability, and struck a chord with my recent penchant for Syrah.

2012 Maglieri Shiraz, Padthaway, Australia.

2012 Maglieri Shiraz, Padthaway, Australia.

Granted, the ambiance helps put the right halo around this Mark Robertson (1999 New Zealand Winemaker Of The Year) wine from the Padthaway appellation of southeast Australia. I mean, look at the view. Seriously…

…but this savory red is far more than just mountain vistas. It’s nearly purple in color and has complex, rich aromas to it. The Maglieri smells of fruit, of spice, and of pepper. There are other scents too–both dark berry and smoky things. You sample this 2012 and then you re-taste the tip of your tongue, puzzling through some hidden flavors that emerge over time.

We had the 2012 Maglieri Shiraz along with grilled steaks (and yes this expensive-tasting wine opens up with pepper) seasoned just with salt and pepper. Wax beans (thanks love!) and baked potato too, lightly sauced up with nonfat yogurt. All in all, a thoroughly enjoyable summer supper in the mountains of North Carolina.

The wine is savory with loads of ripe fruit including blackberries, black cherries, dark raspberries, toasty vanilla oak, mocha, cassis and a cinnamon spice box,” is how one pro summarized the Maglieri. Now, I have no idea what a “dark” raspberry is, but I think it’s the cassis that I was fighting to identify above. Seems like every time I’m wrestling over a spice nuance it comes down to cassis–here too I think. No matter how you describe it, the 2012 Maglieri is a special wine to be sure.

2012 Mr. Riggs “The Ring In” Shiraz

“The Ring In” Shiraz was a mail-order bottle that caught my eye in several ways: 1) its simple, understated horseshoe-shaped logo; 2) its odd name; and 3) the fact that it was a Shiraz.  Several years ago I had a pretty significant Shiraz phase, recording thoughts and tasting notes in a wine notebook, but this grape has been absent from our table in recent months.  Someday I may unearth the notebook and add some of that information to Notes–here some thoughts on the Mr. Riggs experience in the interim:


2012 Mr. Riggs “The Ring In” South Australia Shiraz.

Big bouquet of blackberry and dark fruit on the nose, right upon opening, and with none of the sharpness that you occasionally get when uncorking a Cabernet Sauvignon.  Deep, deep red pour into a glass held by my eager hand, and then more fruit too upon initial tasting.  Here are several ideas from the experts that should further shape your instincts with The Ring In:

This exclusive U.S. import offers notes of black cherry, eucalyptus, violets, blackberry, vanilla, cocoa, and minerals.

As depicted in the mouth-watering photo here, we had The Ring In (a South Australian gem) with a hearty beef stew and biscuits, both cooked up to a tender and flavorful effect by my wife.  You might be thinking about heartburn right about now, but let me assure you her stew broth was packed with subtle tastes that were easy on the tongue and throat.  This meal did well to ward off the chill of a rainy, overcast Sunday and was a great last dinner before an early a.m. flight to New Jersey and “road” foodstuffs.