Monday, June 3, 2013

Modest Monday - Wines Under $10: Penfolds Koonunga Hill Shiraz

Penfolds Koonunga Hill Shiraz 2010
South Australia
I'm not the biggest Australian Shiraz fan out there -- I tend to prefer the slightly less jammy, more refined Syrah of France's Rhone Valley -- but I thought I would give this modestly priced Shiraz the old college try. Penfolds is a giant in the Australian wine market, producing a huge range of wines, from the iconic Grange (which fetches prices comparable to premier cru Bordeaux) all the way down to this little wine for under $10.

Review: This Shiraz is pretty tasty. On the nose I got some nice red berries and fresh plums, with just a hint of leather. On the palate the flavors extend to include black pepper and some baking spice. Like a lot of wines in this price category going for a broad appeal, it seems to be a touch off-dry. It also has a surprisingly light body and good acidity, making it quite quaffable, again hitting on the winemaker looking to appeal to a wider audience. My only complaint would be the tannins -- my teeth are now wearing a fur coat. I'm sure when paired with food, though, the tannins would be fine. 

The grapes for this wine are sourced from many vineyard sites within the large expanse of South Australia, and likely simply lower (but still good) quality fruit that didn't make the cut for the more high end Penfolds wines.

Food Pairing: Meat. A casual barbecued chicken, slathered in sauce.

Bottom Line:  Light and easy to drink with nice fruit. I dig it.


Wine Geekery:

  • VINTAGE: 2010
  • PLACE: South Austrailia
  • GRAPE: Shriaz/Syrah
  • AGEING: American Oak
  • BOOZE: 13.5%
  • CELLAR: Drink now or hold for a few years

Where did I get it?  Trader Joe's

What's the damage?   Low Price

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