95 Points - Ralph Kyte-Powell
When it comes to Australian winemakers, few are as esteemed as John Duval. Appointed Chief Winemaker at Penfolds in 1986, Duval followed in the footsteps of Australian winemaking greats including Max Schubert and Don Ditter, and was the custodian of Penfolds Grange for almost 30 years.
John Duval established his eponymous label back in 2003, with a focus on old vine Barossa Valley Shiraz, along with some select other Rhone varietals. The 2018 John Duval Entity Shiraz is another high quality Shiraz from this esteemed winemaker, which follow in the steps of the hugely popular 2017 vintage (99 Points - Halliday).
Made with the intention of delivering an elegant Shiraz true to the Barossa, this again includes some Eden Valley Shiraz to help maintain the elegance and style of Entity. Approachable in its youth, this has impressive fruit depth and ample structure; awash with fresh, vibrant blue fruits/ blueberries and concentrated plum. Finishing with hints of cedar spice and extremely fine tannins, this superb Barossa Shiraz will cellar for many years to come.
"95 Points. Lovely shiraz that integrates aromas and flavours of dark fruits, sweet and savoury spice, and cedary oak into a polished, mellow wine of delicious drinkability, depth and soft, rip tannin backbone. Screwcap. 14.5% alc. Drink over 10 years plus" - Ralph Kyte-Powell, Epicure The Age, March 30, 2020.
John Duval began working with old vine Barossa Shiraz when he commenced his winemaking career at Penfolds in the early 1970’s. Through the 1990’s he played a leading role in trialling maturation of old vine Barossa Shiraz in new French oak hogsheads, contrary to the established winery convention of blending Shiraz from multiple regions and maturation in American oak.
These early trials led to the first release of the Penfold’s RWT Barossa Shiraz from the 1997 vintage - a wine that marked a step change moment in the style evolution of Barossa Shiraz.
In 2003, John Duval established his eponymous label, with a focus on old vine Barossa Valley Shiraz, along with some select other Rhone varietals.
John’s approach to making Barossa Shiraz continues unchanged, and maturation of selected parcels of old vine fruit in French oak is fundamental to producing Entity; an elegant Shiraz that is true to the Barossa.
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