OMG. Two phenomenal Australian wine icons side by side. This is wine equivalent of the De Niro v Pacino scene in Heat. A real heavyweight combo an no mistake.
Both of these bottles are rated 'Exceptional' in the current Langton's Classification of the greatest Australian wines. Only 20 other labels can make that same claim so we're dealign with some really serious vino here.
First up the 2013 BROKENWOOD Graveyard Shiraz. A beautiful rendering from the Hunter Valley. It's all too easy to lump all Aussie Shirazes under the 'bold and bountiful' category but Graveyard gives us something much more European in style. Medium bodied at 13.5% alcohol. There's a really intriguing incense and blueberry scent which turns savoury and meaty. With seven, nearly eight, years on the dial already this is now into a happy drinking spot but expect it to continue its evolution through to 2030, possibly beyond.
Then we turn to Canberra's superstar, the 2017 CLONAKILLA Shiraz-Viognier. The combination of a small amount of Viognier is a technique borrowed from Syrah's 'ground zero' in France's Cote Rotie zone. It increases the aromatic complexity and brings an extra zip to the wine. Again, not the heavy black wine we might expect. A much more subtle, entrancing wine that twists through soy sauce, ginger, blackcurrant, pepper and ginger scents. Svetle in texture and wonderfully pure and balanced. If Burgundy grew Syrah instead of Pinot noir it'd likely turn out like this.
While both will age further in bottle (under the right conditions) there is no harm in twisting the tops and discovering the considerable charms within them right now.