Famous duos usually have a ying and yang dynamic going on: the good cop will bring you coffee while the bad cop will get the information, Han Solo will shoot enemies while Chewbacca flies the ship. For this reason, Cabernet Sauvignon’s most common sidekick is Merlot, complementing each other as the tough and the mellow.
Rawson’s Retreat Shiraz Cabernet 2013, has a different approach to grape matchmaking and combines mighty Cab Sauv with spicy Shiraz, which has enough muscle on its own merit.
However, far from locking two alpha wolves in the same cage, in the skillful hands of winemakers from the same family of Penfolds -one of Australia’s most respected wineries-, this duo manages to get along. With the help of a bit of ageing, they even develop a solid friendship.
The Rawson’s Retreat range, to which this very Aussie blend belongs to, is named after the Dr. Christpher Rawson Penfolds’ family home, the “Grange Cottage”, built in 1845, just a year after his first vines were planted. At 13%5 ABV and with a medium body, it shows a rather amiable face of two varieties that can get a bit unruly, specially Down Under.
It will benefit from decanting, although energetic swirling made it talk: aromas of dried cranberry, sour cherry and clove with an earthy background become bolder and brighter as you taste, with a mouth-watering acidity and tannins of gentle strength grabbing your palate. A savoury, mineral touch and the toastiness of a sensible use of oak complement the picture.
Rawson’s Retreat Shiraz Cabernet 2013 Rawson’s Retreat Shiraz Cabernet 2013 is available at O’Briens Wine at €14.95
Gabriela’s passion for writing is only matched by her love for food and wine. Journalist, confectioner and sommelier, she fell in love with Ireland years ago and moved from Venezuela to Dublin in 2014.
Since then, she has written about and worked in the local food scene, and she’s determined to discover and share the different traditions, flavours and places that have led Irish food and drink to fascinate her.