|Wine||Brother John May Reserve|
|Maturation||22 Months in New French Oak.
Plus 2 years of bottle age prior to release.
|Wine Maker||Brother John May (Emeritus)|
Good evening wine lovers. A bit of a break since my last review, which I found most of you enjoyed. I thought tonight I will remain on a similar course and look at another big Shiraz. In my hot little hands, I have a wine that was gifted to me from my brother for my birthday back in 2011. This wine comes from the first winery established in the Clare Valley; Sevenhill Wines, which was settled by the Society of Jesus (Jesuits) back in 1851. Back then its primary mission was to produce sacramental wines. (A tradition that continues today.) However, since their settlement to the region, they have produced some incredible table wines, and tonight, I have their flagship wine in my hands.
Before I look at this wine, I think it is important to know a little bit about the wine-maker. Brother St John came to the Clare Valley back in 1963. The wine tonight comes from a low-yielding vineyard which he planted shortly after his arrival to the region. It was John whom took the name of this winery and started to make wines that weren’t just for sacramental purposes, but could be enjoyed as table wines too.
I think all that said, let’s look at the wine at hand and do what I do best.
Colour: Deep ruby red. Starting to show the browning colour of brick as it ages.
Aroma: Dark plum and black cherry. Still ripe after 8 years. Sultana and fruitcake start to emerge from the glass, tell-tale signs of a big shiraz on the turning point. I am then greeted by nuances of dark chocolate and leather. Tobacco and liquorice spices round out this wine in the glass.
Palate: Medium bodied wine, soft tannins. Plum and black olive sway into fruitcake territory as terra-rossa and fruit jostle away. Leather, coffee, aniseed and nutmeg complete the lengthy harmonious journey on the palate; making it an exceptional wine from start to finish.
Personal Thoughts: I am rather glad I approached this wine at this stage of its life. Everything is in complete harmony; and although there is the ability to keep this wine for another 5 plus years, I feel currently, this is the absolute best this wine will be. Each individual element of this wine pushes through and shines. To me, this wine is at the pinnacle of displaying characters of youth, and combining it with the characteristics that develop with bottle age; such as sultana and fruitcake spices. Like I said; thoroughly impressed by what this wine did for me. I am very fortunate that I looked at this wine when I did, and didn’t leave it for another 5 years in the bottle.
Drink: Now to 2022 (I would suggest peak drinking is within the next 10 months)
The SA Wine Guy