2016 d' Arenberg Shiraz The Stump Jump

Year: 2016
Appellation: McLaren Vale
Country: Australia
Wine Spectator: 90
Wine Advocate: 87
Wine Enthusiast: 89
Red Wine
Alcohol by Volume: 13.9%
Price :
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"Distinctive, with a fresh note of spearmint complementing the juicy core of plum and blackberry flavors. Herb, chai tea and cigar box elements linger on the long, expressive finish, where the tannins firm up but never get in the way. Drink now through 2035. 9,000 cases imported. -MW " (WS)

"The medium-bodied 2016 The Stump Jump Shiraz is another terrific bargain. No, it's not a big, plush wine, but it is a crisp, remarkably drinkable mouthful of Shiraz. Red plums and cherries are buttressed by enough tannins so that this can ably partner with weeknight burgers but not so much as to weigh down the wine.

One suspects that Chester Osborne, of flamboyant shirt fame, has grown his family's wine empire beyond all imaginings. The family purchased 160 acres in McLaren Vale in 1912 and built their winery in 1927; first crush was in 1928. Vineyard holdings now cover 500 acres. For years, much of the wine was sold in bulk to Penfolds. No doubt that helped shape the house style, as Osborne says, "I'm not shy of tannins." The bulk of the vast range revolves around McLaren Vale stalwarts like Shiraz, Grenache and Cabernet Sauvignon, but Osborne has expanded the range with offers as diverse as white Rhône-style blends, botrytis Riesling and (his latest) Mencía, which Osborne claims ripens later than Shiraz, hence avoiding the worst of the summer temperatures. His visionary Cube-a multisensorial exhibit/fine dining restaurant/tasting room—made waves when it was first proposed and has attracted a huge number of visitors since it was completed. Time constraints being what they are on trips like this, I didn't have a chance to try out the restaurant, where the average meal is something like ten courses and four hours. Maybe next time." (WA)

"In d'Arenberg's fashion, this well-priced wine is simultaneously rich and approachable. The raspberry and plum fruit is ripe and lifted, backed by red licorice, mocha and a distinctive herbal, peppery streak. On the palate, gravelly, earthy tannins run along a herbal, savory spine, keeping the fruit from veering into jam territory. Instead, it feels fresh and brambly." (WE)

Winery Notes:
The name ‘Stump Jump’ relates to the significant South Australian invention – the Stump Jump plough. This plough became a popular piece of machinery for ploughing fields because of its ability to ride over stumps and gnarled “mallee” Eucalypt roots and snags, saving valuable time and resources by not stopping the draught horse.

The season began well with average winter rainfall, Summer conditions were significantly warmer than average with two heatwaves through January testing the limits of the vines. Following the heatwave was rain and cool weather, which helped slow down ripening, and allowed flavor development to catch up to sugar ripeness. White wines from this vintage are fruity and very flavorsome, as are reds with ample tannin to match.

On the nose, the wine is full of cherry and blackberry fruits, which continue on the palate. What sets this Shiraz apart is the intensity of the ripe fruit, which is just as concentrated on the finish as when the wine first hits your tongue. The finish has a mineral-graphite edge that balances the fruit nicely. In all, it drinks far, far, above its price point.