For ages I thought Durif and Petite Sirah were one and the same grape. Well, I was wrong. Don’t I feel like an idiot. Durif is a cross between Syrah and a grape variety I’ve never heard of, Peloursin (apparently there are some grown in Victoria). We can thank Doctor Durif (yes, that’s his name) for bringing the two together way back in the 1880s. I wonder if he knew at the time what he had created and the pleasure he would bring to the Australian wine drinker?
First up, I must say, the new labels on these wines are terrific. Well done Ray and the team. They depict certain stages of the vineyard and, not that I am into art but, I’d be interested to know if the artwork is hanging proudly somewhere on the Granite Belt. I sincerely hope so.
Durif’s reputation is for being a big, monster of a wine. Big everything from the fruit to the alcohol, to the headache the next day if you drink too much of it. Well, this one is no different but, wait for it, there is a difference. It has that ‘punch’ if you like but it seems more refined than your regular durif.
The colour is deep as you’d expect and the aromas are simply, sweet fruitfully, divine.
Bold as brass in the fruit area with blueberries, mulberries and a hint of dark fruit flavours greet you without an apology. Then spices and some quality chocolate come knocking at the door and enter like they are part of the furniture. The oak is not obvious even though there is 25% of the new American kind in there which speaks highly of the fruit winemaker, Ray Costanzo, has growing in his vineyard. The tannins scream out for a chunk of red meat but hey, I’m comfortable with that. An excellent example of the rich, robust yet juicy variety known as durif.
Region: Granite Belt, Queensland Price: $30 (cheap) Source: Sample thanks to Golden Grove Estate (cheers Ray Costanzo)