For pop and pour sipping on the deck with some herb (from our garden) infused oil and cheese, I pulled this Marquis Philips '9' Shiraz 2002, one of a few remaining from the oldest of a half dozen vintages we still hold of this wine. Crafted by Sparky and Sarah Marquis before they moved to Mollydooker fame, this bold expressive forward wine begs for the tangy spicy bar-b-cue or hearty cheese, and vica versa!
As I wrote in my last review of this wine, last summer, this full-throttle intensely concentrated classic South Australian Shiraz burst on the scene in 2001 with direction from Robert Parker to 'run, don't walk' to your wineshop to buy this wine. Marquis Philps was the result of a partnership between the highly respected South Australian viticulturists/winemakers, Sarah and Sparky Marquis and their importer, Dan Philips of the Grateful Palate. The Aussie - American partnership produced the whimsical Roogle character - half eagle and half kangaroo (shown on label left). The brand of Marquis Philips inexpensive wines immediately gained enormous success and a faithful following. Of course Sarah and Sparky Marquis went on to form the current follow-on brand/label Mollydooker.
This big, complex, concentrated powerful wine with super rich, ripe tongue-coating fruit. This release of '9' was sourced from McLaren Vale (60%) and Padthaway (40%) in South Central Australia.
This 2002 Shiraz 9 is showing the same at a thirteen years as it did at ten according to my earlier review, still opaque dark garnet inky purple colored, full-bodied, complex, intensely concentrated tongue coating notes of super ripe black currants and plum but the aging fruits are taking on notes of raisin and fig with tones of espresso roast, smoked meats and leather on the layer of mocha, burnt sugar with hints of alcohol and anise on the lingering finish.
While Robert Parker and I gave this 93 points on release and in 2004, I give it 88 points at this stage of life and advise to drink it up. Linda loves this bold expressive style but its actually too much and over the top for my tastes.
RM 88 points.
93 points, Robert Parker's Wine Advocate October 2004
89 points, Stephen Tanzer's IWC