Ray Jordan’s Top 100 Reds 2017

The Best Wine

Deep Woods Shiraz et al 2015 ($20)

This gives the traditional Rhone blend a little tweak using Malbec instead of mourvedre. That’s the “M”. It works so beautifully well and it still amazes me that this sells for around the $20 mark. Generous and fruity with loads of toasty chocolate influences. A little sprinkle of spices adds a finishing lift. 93/100

Runner Up

Bleasdale Second Innings malbec 2015 ($20)

Bleasdale have made something of a specialty with malbec, and this is their terrific entry level wine. Worth checking out as an alternative. 93/100

The Wines $15 to $20

Houghton Crofters shiraz 2014 ($20)

Another very good wine under this revitalized label. IT’s sourced from Frankland River where the quality of shiraz is pretty much always exceptional. A most elegant wine with fine chalky tannins and fine-grained oak working through the cherry and typical Frankland blueberry characters. IT’s more medium bodied but with stacks of intensity driving through to the finish. Smart for around $20. 93/100

Fowles Are You Game? Shiraz 2014 ($18.35)

Terrific little shiraz which won a gold at Sydney. Such balance and poise with a beautiful lift of scents and spices. Touch of black pepper. Excellent easy drinking wine with a touch of class. 91/00

Mitolo Nessus shiraz 2016 ($16)

Punchy and powerful expression of McLaren Vale from one of the region’s best. Dark chocolate and ripe satsuma plum in abundance. Bit of a fruit bomb with a decent bang for your buck. 91/100

Battle of Bosworth Puritan shiraz 2016 ($19.95)

No preservative added to this McLaren Vale shiraz. It’s made as a young light and fresh easy drinking red wine and is best in the short term. Savoury plum and loads of punchy fruit on the finish. 91/100

19 Crimes shiraz 2015 ($16.05)

A new brand from the Treasury Group and not a bad one either. It’s soft generous and plump with a decent hit of sweet plum and dark chocolate. Yep, you could drink a bit of this at a push. 90/100

Fox Creek Red Baron shiraz 2015 ($18.50)

Real crowd-pleasing value for money shiraz from McLaren Vale. Loads of plump fleshy fruit on a balanced palate where oak works in subtly and the fine tannins add some definition to the finish.  90/100

Cabernet sauvignon

Miles From Nowhere cabernet merlot 2015 ($18)

Medium bodied, flavoursome and well balanced. This is just perfect for current drinking. Perfumed highly scented notes of red berry and leafy violet like characters. The palate is well structured with good flavour pushing through to the finish. 92/100

Amberley Secret Lane cabernet merlot 2014 ($20)

Another excellent wine under what has become a brand name rather than a vineyard of origin. Has all that you want in this price category with good balance and poise and vibrant lively fruit characters. 92/100

Flametree Embers cabernet sauvignon 2015 ($20)

No mistaking this is Margaret River cabernet. Wat a mighty good wine for an entry level. Blows me away with those red berry and blackberry nuances on the nose and a layer of expertly applied oak complementing the juicy ripe palate. Delicious plummy fruit fills the middle palate brilliantly. Gosh this is good value. 92/100

Xanadu Exmoor cabernet sauvignon 2014 ($18)

Ho hum, just another super wine from Xanadu that fits into the value for money category. Sweet black fruits with a touch of meaty blackcurrant and black olive. Excellent. 92/100

Lansdowne cabernet sauvignon 2015 ($19.50)

Structured and very pure cabernet fruit on the nose. A heap of blackcurrant and dark chocolate richness with that edgy black olive nuances adding a cutting balance. Great current drinking.

92/100

Hardy’s Tintara Geology cabernet sauvignon 2015 ($19)

Beautiful varietally pure cabernet sauvignon from McLaren Vale. Black currant juiciness dominates the palate. Smooth and supple. Impressive wine, this. 92/100

Jacob’s Creek Margaret River cabernet sauvignon 2014 ($20)

Captures the style and the fruit qualities and character of Margaret River cabernet rather well in this value for money drink that offers an additional touch of polish. Firm structure with fleshy plump fruit wrapped around. 92/100

Taylor’s cabernet sauvignon 2015 ($20)

One of the big names of the Clare Valley. This shows that pure juicy red berry cabernet fruit of the region with an effortlessly long palate a feature. This is a thoroughly beautifully well-made wine ready for the next few years. 91/100

Ferngrove Frankland River cabernet sauvignon 2015 ($18.35)

A medium bodied cabernet that fits neatly into the value for money category but then offers just a little more. Leafy blackcurrant fruit with some fleshier plum and light tobacco influences. Smooth integrated palate with a long finish. 91/100

Pinot noir

Copia pinot noir 2015 ($17.90)

From the Great Southern where there is some pretty good pinot noir grown Like this one with its sour cherry and leafy savoury elements Excellent balance and poise for this medium to light bodied pinot. 90/100

Blends

Deep Woods shiraz et al 2015 ($20)

This gives the traditional Rhone blend a little tweak using Malbec instead of mourvedre. That’s the “M”. It works so beautifully well and it still amazes me that this sells for around the $20 mark. Generous and fruity with loads of toasty chocolate influences. A little sprinkle of spices adds a finishing lift. 93/100

Rusden Driftsand grenache shiraz mataro 2015 ($19.30)

A beaut Grenache shiraz mataro blend. The lifted rose petal and slightly earthy grenache is a feature. Medium to full bodied and so elegant. A beautifully presented drink for the short term. 92/100

Pitchfork cabernet merlot 2015 ($17.10)

This value wine had gradually moved up a notch in quality in recent years and this one yet again delivers the goods. Packs all the goodies into a warm fleshy palate with those blackcurrant and light fruit cakey characters coming together in an appealing drinking combo. 90/100

Other varieties

Bleasdale Second Innings malbec 2015 ($20)

Bleasdale have made something of a specialty with malbec, which is not a bad thing as it’s making quite a comeback. This is medium bodied with a beautiful floral perfume on the nose. The palate has grainy chalky tannins supporting soft fleshy fruit. It has structure and poise and at this price is sensational value. 93/100

Brown Brothers 18 Eighty Nine tempranillo 2015 ($18)

Love this temp with its savoury dusty and slightly earthy notes on the nose balancing the cherry and light raspberry influence. It’s a super wine designed for current quaffing with paella perhaps.

92/100

RAY'S WINE GUIDE 2017