At the request of DP, I committed to recommending an expensive bottle every Christmas season. Here’s my first pick, one of my very favorite “treat” wines: Wolf Blass Black Label Cab Shiraz.
Each year’s offering is a blend from red grapes, usually with Cabernet Sauvignon dominating, plus a good amount of Shiraz, and bits of Merlot or Malbec to tweak it to perfection . They don’t commit to a specific recipe each year, saying that this gives them the flexibility to simply pick the best possible fruit.
I was introduced to Grey Wolfie by F–, and I remember that the wine was so incredible I had said it was like drinking silk. Shortly thereafter, I had to try out the very top product of the Wolf Blass lineage.
The most recent vintage I tasted was the 2003. This one was 50% Cab, 44% Shiraz, and 6% Malbec. Aged in oak for two full years. 15% alcohol. Fantastic cassis nose, with noticeable Ozzie eucapyltus. Ripe plum and milk chocolate on the palate as well. Full, lush and yeah… silky.
If you can find older bottles, you’re lucky. Releases are done four years after vintage, to get a bit more age on them even after their long oak baths. The latest release is the 2005, but it will improve over time if you have the patience to lay it down for a while.
$99.99 at BC Liquor Board stores. A gift for someone you really, really love.