1996 Chateau Reynella Vintage port 19%
Shiraz, McLaren Vale, bottle #00534 “should offer excellent drinking at ten to twenty years of age”
The photo is of bottle #500, which was rejected as being slightly dull. That’s cork!
Deep ruby in colour, with some bricking. Camphor, red berry and cherry, with a slight confectionary character, and definite sweet spices. Served blind, my conclusion was that the wine was Australian, and predominantly Shiraz, with some Portuguese varieties present. With hindsight, I attributed its plentiful spice notes to Portuguese varieties such as Touriga rather than to the high-quality brandy spirit – so there’s another factor to watch for. The palate was fresh, with mixed spices, Swiss milk chocolate, and some creaminess.
Chateau Reynella – now Reynella- was renowned for the blackberry characteristic of its VP styles (battling with the “rounder” plate of neighbour Hardys). However, the absence of blackberry pushed my assumption (wrongly) to a Victorian base. Altogether, the wine was in excellent condition, and passed the “more please” test.
Drink to 2030, and 92 points.
2003 Morris Vintage Port 19%
Rutherglen, 51% Shiraz, 28% Touriga, 21% Durif.
A $22 auction purchase last year. Its label shows gold medals at four different shows across five years, a super- impressive result.
Adequate cork. Deep black with some trivial bricking on the rim. Cherry ripe meets blueberry and violets. Sweetness with wafer-fine tannins. Spirit folded in. Seductive, sensuous texture. Concentration with elegance. Supple, bright and fresh, with a lot of time left to mellow. Bargain.
Drink to 2035, 93+ points