Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Mr. Riggs McLaren Vale vs 90+ Cellars Lot 101 Shiraz

Mr. Riggs McLaren Vale Shiraz 2003 

Ironically, just like tonight, we last tasted a 2004 vintage of this wine BYOB at Angeli's Restaurant, our favorite neighborhood trattoria, which was also just like our earlier tasting of the 2002 vintage of this same wine, and an additional Shiraz, with L and  same friends Gayle and Mark B at the same restaurant.

This was strikingly similar to earlier tasting notes of the 2002 release. In early 2009 I wrote about the '02, "Ink color, immense, intense full bodied fruit forward - almost over ripe rich thick extracted fruit, almost Amarone like. Black berry, raisiny black cherry, graphite, black licorice. The Mr Riggs needs a big accompaniment to offset its ripe full forward fruit - perhaps dark chocolate or an English stilton!" I stand on those words, however, five years later, the black berry fruits are giving way a bit showing their age and becoming a slight bit flabby.

Like the earlier vintages, this release also comes in the overweight thick glass bottle packaging. 

Back in 2009, I gave the earlier vintage 91 points. Tonight, five years later I give the '03 88 points.

Ninety Plus Cellars Lot 101 Syrah 2009

Like the earlier tasting, we brought another Shiraz that presented a contrast in styles and regions, and age, of the same varietal. Tonight, we brought a 2009 vintage Shiraz from Columbia Valley, Washington. I've raved about this wine several times in this blog and tonight, like before, it didn't disappoint. I've stated that this may be one of our favorite drinking wines in our cellar right now, certainly at this price point!

Compared to the forward, obtuse Mr Riggs, the Lot 101 Shiraz came across as smooth, polished and elegant.

Dark inky garnet colored, medium to full bodied, this full throttle Syrah reveals layers of blackberry and black currants fruits with tones of sweet vanilla, caramel and spice with hints of black pepper on a lingering smooth silky tannin finish.

RM 92 points.