For a social dinner with L and friends Mark and Gayle B at Angeli's Italian, we compared two vintage Aussie Shiraz's. Heathcote Victoria Shiraz 2004 and Henry's Drive Reserve Shiraz 2002.
Heathcote II, Heathcote, Victoria, Australia Shiraz 2004
I still remember discovering this wine, tasting it at the wine desk with Wine Manager Bill and Aussie buyer Bill, at Binny's GE store. I bought all they had.
Inky/purple color, full bodied. Not quite as big and fruit forward as my memory and tasting notes reflect from earlier tastings, but big none-the-less. Huge full beautiful aromas of fruit that permeate the room upon opening. Full bodied, rich, structured, full forward flavors of graphite, blackberries, black raspberries, chewy currant, mocha and mineral.
Earlier ratings - RM 94 RP 94 - tonight 93 points, perhaps reflecting beginning of diminution of fruit falling off due to age. Time to drink.
Henry's Drive Reserve Padthaway Shiraz 2002
Interesting contrast to the bigger, bolder, more forward Heathcote. Henry's Drive was medium bodied, it's subdued fruits moderate but nicely balanced and polished - this was preferred by the girls - my rating and notes consistent with my tasting notes from two years ago ....
Dark ink color - medium full bodied - lighter and much more subdued than my earlier tasting note record, which was six years ago. This was not the full, thick extracted fruit with huge mouth-feel fruit bomb from that review. It still has the same flavor profile of currant and blackberry, a tone of black cherry giving way to tones of tea and tobacco with a hint of smoky sweet oak and vanilla on the long lingering silky tannin finish. My '90' rating was significantly reduced from my earlier '94' back in 2005 suggesting its time to drink younger and drink remaining bottle in the near term as they are past their prime and not improving.
RM 90 points.