Stuart George

The Duke of Hazard

In Tastings on September 13, 2010 at 11:16 am

At a friend’s birthday party on Friday evening I took a bottle of Kilikanoon The Duke Grenache 2006, which I’d had for a while, to sample. I have been to the Clare Valley four times since 2003 but have not come across Kilikanoon before.

I don’t often drink Clare Valley reds, and certainly not old vine Grenache. It was dry, verging on raisiny, with some developed faecal aromas, which I don’t mind. It was mature, developed and nicely textured.

However, the 15% alcohol declared on the label made me nervous. Sure enough, my head thudded like John Bonham’s bass drum after a couple of glasses of The Duke, though admittedly I’d had a couple beforehand – but it was only Prosecco. I’ve lost the photo I took of the bottle. This wine is hazardous.

Made in a self-consciously “big” style, this is really not my type. It’s just too heavy to drink with pleasure. Robert Parker likes it, apparently, which is probably as strong a warning sign as the printed alcohol level.

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