S.C. Pannell is previously mentioned on this blog and upon tasting his (Stephen Pannell’s) wines again at the last Wine Ark tasting I wanted to give attention again to his wines, and in particular his grenache as it was just one of my favourites… In mine and others opinions, this is one of the best examples of grenache in the country.
Stephen also doesn’t like releasing his wines too young, which not many wine names are able to do these days for their current releases. It’s unfortunate how many great Australian wines we have available from retailers, bars and restaurants, drinking WAY too young! And we’re paying top dollar for it too. There’s a lot missed when drinking a great wine in the shackles of its youth. It’s not hard – just grab some great wine at whatever price point (as long as it ages well – eg. some great age-worthy bargains can be found in Wynns, d’Arenberg, Torbreck…) and forget about it for a while (you can call it your ’emergency’ reserve). Some say cellar half, drink half, for each case of wine you buy. Anyway back to S.C. Pannell…
S.C. Pannell Grenache 2006: A superb example of grenache (also known as Garnacha), and incredibly versatile with food. Many winemakers try to make their grenache taste more like a shiraz (what many people are used to in Australian wine), but Stephen focuses on bringing the true characteristics of grenache out in his ‘labour of love’. Bright red fruits on both nose and palate, then deeper, silky smooth tannin, fruits and spices on tasting. Great acidity and structured well, which compliments a wide array of foods such as tapas, meaty dishes, Italian, fatty foods, cheese, bbqs… Length? Very long. Rrp around $50. Drink up to 10 years.
As summer’s approaching, the S.C. Pannell Rose Arido 2009 is also a great wine. Bone-dry, instead of sweet and tarty like many cheap rose wines. Has a beautiful uplifted fragrance with strawberries and a hint of rosewater (I mean uplifted as opposed to the darker bouquet of a shiraz for example). An elegant but still refreshing rose wine, held together with good structure and acidity. Rrp around $27. Drinking well now.
Feel free to check out the rest of S.C. Pannell’s wines @ http://www.pannell.com.au/
“Stephen’s extensive knowledge and experience has been garnered over many years working with some Australia’s iconic wineries and alongside numerous overseas vintages at such places as Domaine des Comtes Lafon in Burgundy, Chateau Mouton Rothschild in Bordeaux and G.D. Vajra in Barolo. Other highlights in Stephen’s career include winning the title of International Red Winemaker of the Year at the International Wine Challenge in London, winning the Jimmy Watson Memorial Trophy at the Royal Melbourne Wine Show, twice winning the Max Schubert Trophy at the Adelaide Wine Show as well as being listed as one of the 50 most influential contributors to the world of wine by Decanter Magazine… At the recent annual Australian Alternative Varieties Wine Show awards night, the S.C. Pannell 2007 Adelaide Hills Nebbiolo triumphed by claiming three trophies – Best Italian Varietal, Best Red Wine and Best Wine of Show.”