2012 Inkwell  I&I - Shiraz

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James Halliday Wine Companion - Review By Campbell Mattinson

Vintage: 2012

Rating: 95

Drink By: 2025

Price: $30.00

Date Tasted: 01 Aug 2014

Alcohol: 14.5%

Creamy, ripe, voluptuous shiraz. Fresh through the finish but awash with dark-berried flavour for the most part. Cloves and other woody spice notes. Fruit-shot tannin. Comes at you in waves. Made from estate-grown fruit and matured in French oak, though 85% of this oak is used/old. Fruit shines in all its dark glory.

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InDaily - review by Philip White

30; 14.5% alcohol; screw cap; 93++ points

Maybe it’s the vineyard’s proximity to the Gulf St Vincent (patron of viticulturers) that has soothed this wine to a more mellow state than the mighty 2012s made in regions further from such calming Mediterranean humidity; perhaps it’s Dudley Brown’s increasing wisdom as a grower and maker who understands his geology. I reckon it’s both. Whatever. This is a rich dense syrup of prune and pickled morello cherries with a drying topnote that’s as much soft-and-pithy Ditters dried apple as the chalky clay and ferruginous sandstone of the site.

In the Vales, sandstone often seems to impart more morello, while the rare bits of chalky calcrete give tighter, less humourous, Coonawarra-like tannins. But that’s the bouquet. In the mouth the wine is more typical ’12. It’s long and intense and bone dry with the sort of fine tannin that will carry it for the year or two it will take for its lovely fruit juice to properly swell and cushion that natural grapeskin and pip preservative. Right now, I’d love the opportunity to have it with numerous spoonsful of ripe Stilton. Which is how my mate Max Schubert preferred to take a younger Grange.

Published on 6 November 2014

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The Wine Front - review by Mike Bennie

This is 100% shiraz, and the blend that the winemaker deems best, from the other blends, if you get the drift – all estate fruit. The last three years the picking has been earlier. I & I for the song by Bob Dylan, and also because Irina, Dudley Brown’s wife’s initial is I so it is him and her. Awww. I like to think it is more about the oneness of Jah and that Brown is a closet Rastafari. 

Coffee, mocha, choc-berry characters. Perfume is heady and attractive. Fleshy and succulent to taste, excelllent in texture, silky but rich, finishes with spice and chalky pucker. Medium bodied, smooth, compact and feels very fancy.

Rated : 92 Points

Tasted : JUN14
Alcohol : 14%
Price : $40
Closure : Screwcap
Drink : 2014 - 2024

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Australian Wine Review - by Andrew Graham

Unusual in Vale terms as it is wild fermented (which is the regional exception). Produced from all four Inkwell blocks, this is an absolute bargain. 14.5% TA 6.1, pH 3.68. $30.Thick, fruit cake ripeness to kick off, luscious red fruit ripple palate with good concentration and a mid weight balance. Definitely a more energetic style of Vale Shiraz (and tastes warmer than many in this lineup), if not quite a heavyweight in terms of extract. Lovely style though - feels really unforced and pure, the withering blackness keeps on and on. It's bold and fruitcakey to start but that finish and length keeps on and on.

Top shelf. 18.5/20, 94/100

Published on October 19, 2014


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Wine Will Eat Itself - review by Jeremy Pringle (in memoriam)

References to a Bob Dylan song, Rastafarianism and Dudley Brown’s marriage to Irina Santiago last year. I tasted this with the happy couple over dinner when in McLaren Vale earlier in the year but no notes were made. A magnificent cheesecake and an extended viewing of Scorsese’s “The Last Waltz” took both us and our conversation long into the night.

Black and blue fruits, licorice, chocolate and tar. Unashamedly full-bodied but the weave of tannin provides very good form and refreshment. Sweet brown spice. Deliciously pitched, controlled oak input and even pacing. All velvet and muscles. 93+

Region: McLaren Vale
Alcohol: 14.5%
Closure: Screwcap
Price: $40
Tasted: July 2014