Expensive wine 52: d’Arenberg The Dead Arm Shiraz 2008
That the best news for the Australian wine business in the past couple of years is the decline in the value of the Aussie dollar says everything anyone needs to know about the struggles the wine industry is enduring Down Under.
There are too many grapes, too many indifferently made cheap wines, and too many expensive wines made in the Parkerized style that is no longer popular.
Having said that, I’ve tasted several Australian wines in the past year that demonstrate that not everyone is at a loss about what to do next. Yalumba’s $10 wines are everything that most of the rest of the country’s $10 wines aren’t.
And The Dead Arm ($65, sample, 14.5%), like most of d’Arenberg’s products, does the same thing for expensive wine. It’s dark and interesting, with earthiness and spiciness up front and layers and layers and layers of black fruit flavors after that. It’s not so much that it’s well made; it should be for this price. The stunner is that it’s a value at $65, an absolutely amazing and complex wine that tastes of Australia and the McLaren Vale region, but isn’t over-ripe or over-alcoholic.
Highly recommended. Drink now, or buy to age for a couple of years or even longer. It should become rounder and more integrated and that much more fun to drink. What more can we want from a wine?